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Insight - Learn the Working of a Gas Sensor

Table of Contents:

  1. Insight - Learn the Working of a Gas Sensor
  2. Internal Features
  3. Ceramic Sensing Element

Written By: 

Vaibhav Jain



In current technology scenario, monitoring of gases produced is very important. From home appliances such as air conditioners to electric chimneys and safety systems at industries monitoring of gases is very crucial. Gas sensors are very important part of such systems.  Small like a nose, gas sensors spontaneously react to the gas present, thus keeping the system updated about any alterations that occur in the concentration of molecules at gaseous state.   


Gas sensors are available in wide specifications depending on the sensitivity levels, type of gas to be sensed, physical dimensions and numerous other factors. This Insight covers a methane gas sensor that can sense gases such as ammonia which might get produced from methane. When a gas interacts with this sensor, it is first ionized into its constituents and is then adsorbed by the sensing element. This adsorption creates a potential difference on the element which is conveyed to the processor unit through output pins in form of current. What is this sensing element? Is it kept in some chamber or is kept exposed? How does it get current and how it is taken out? Let’s find out in this Insight!!!

Gas Sensor

The gas sensor module consists of a steel exoskeleton under which a sensing element is housed. This sensing element is subjected to current through connecting leads. This current is known as heating current through it, the gases coming close to the sensing element get ionized and are absorbed by the sensing element. This changes the resistance of the sensing element which alters the value of the current going out of it.

Gas Sensor Outer Structure Image01

Image 01 shows externals of a standard gas sensor module: a steel mesh, copper clamping ring and connecting leads. The top part is a stainless steel mesh which takes care of the following:

{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}1.      {C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}Filtering out the suspended particles so that only gaseous elements are able to pass to insides of the sensor.  


{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}2.      {C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}Protecting the insides of the sensor.

{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}3.      {C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}{C}Exhibits an anti explosion network that keeps the sensor module intact at high temperatures and gas pressures.

In order to manage above listed functions efficiently, the steel mesh is made into two layers. The mesh is bound to rest of the body via a copper plated clamping ring.

Gas Sensor Filter Cover


The connecting leads of the sensor are thick so that sensor can be connected firmly to the circuit and sufficient amount of heat gets conducted to the inside part. They are casted from copper and have tin plating over them. Four of the six leads (A, B, C, D) are for signal fetching while two (1,2) are used to provide sufficient heat to the sensing element.

The pins are placed on a Bakelite base which is a good insulator and provides firm gripping to the connecting leads of the sensor.


nice explanation.........

and what is the sensing material for different gases?

want code of this system

good explanation on the working principle of gas sensor.

does this gas sensor can be used for diabetics monitoring with proper reading?

thank you for the explanation

nice explanation,

can u explain how the gas molecules are ionezed in the sensor??

what is the range of this sensor

Thanks for info

nice info....

how much distance does mq7 sensor wil sense the gas