Renesas Electronics Corporation, a supplier of advanced semiconductor solutions, has expanded its popular ZMOD4410 Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) sensor platform with the power of embedded artificial intelligence (e-AI), enabling smart odor sensing for ventilation systems, monitoring and controls, and air-quality monitors.
The enhanced platform combines neural network-trained firmware on various microcontrollers (MCUs), such as the Renesas RL78 MCU, to provide higher resolution measurement results. With these new capabilities, the ZMOD4410 platform is capable of detecting gases that indicate the presence of odors in small enclosed rooms with higher accuracy and improved part-to-part deviation. It can also distinguish between sulfur and ethanol-based odors. The updates are the first in a family of e-AI-based firmware solutions from Renesas.
“The IAQ market’s demand for higher accuracy, improved performance, and greater flexibility to address application-specific requirements continues to rise, as customers prioritize part-to-part consistency for this market success,” said Uwe Guenther, senior director, Sensing Solutions, IoT and Infrastructure Business Unit at Renesas.
Guenther added: “Our multi-dimensional sensor approach enables the updated ZMOD4410 platform to be more accurate and selective by applying AI-based capabilities to smart sensing, which gives customers the high accuracy, high flexibility options they need to customize their ventilation and odor monitoring and control systems, and provide consumers with a more enjoyable environment.”
Renesas’ unique software-configurable ZMOD platform provides greater design flexibility for smart sensing systems, allowing firmware updates in the field that enable new, application-specific capabilities such as selective measurements to detect volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The new firmware updates enable IAQ measurement within international guidelines, allowing customers to measure total VOCs (TVOCs) and IAQ in the low parts-per-million range (ppm).
The higher accuracy and consistency provides improved estimated Carbon Dioxide (eCO2) levels. The ZMOD4410 AI firmware has been implemented on a Renesas RL78 MCU, but can also be implemented on any Renesas MCU – including RE, RA, or RX devices, and other general-purpose MCUs.
The ZMOD4410’s combination of programmability, best-in-class stability, and sensitivity in measuring VOCs makes it an excellent solution for a wide range of IAQ applications, including smart HVAC systems, ventilator fans, and bathroom lights and switches. The ZMOD4410 is based on proven metal oxide (MOx) material and each sensor is electrically and chemically tested to ensure consistency from lot to lot, an important advantage for manufacturers with long production runs. The ZMOD4410 devices are also highly resistant to siloxanes for superior reliability use in harsh applications.