A customer of SST’s well known and reputable sales partners in the US, CO2 Meter Inc, was curious to know how the LuminOx Optical Oxygen Sensor compares to a much more expensive oxygen sensor like the Piccolo2 sensor by PyroScience.
CO2 Meter Inc are an engineering company based in Ormond Beach, Florida. They specialise in the design and manufacture of gas detection and monitoring devices – mainly CO2. In 2013, CO2 Meter Inc began selling SST’s LuminOx Optical Oxygen Sensor as it was an offering that complimented their product portfolio.
The question was raised by Heinz Surbeck, President of Nucfilm GmbH in Switzerland. Mr Surbeck is a physicist working in the field of environmental monitoring. For 20 years he was head of the Swiss Federal Environmental Radioactivity Lab, then for 10 years a Sensor Scientist/Lecturer at the University of Neuchatel’s Center for Hydrogeology and a lecturer at the Earth Sciences Dept of the ETH-Zurich.
In one of his company’s projects, Mr. Surbeck needed oxygen sensors to helping fish farms mitigate their supersaturation problems. This included continuous monitoring of oxygen, carbon dioxide and total dissolved gas pressure (TDGP) to determine nitrogen partial pressures in the water above partial pressure in the atmosphere, trout fish get sick (bubble disease).
“I’m well equipped with optical oxygen sensors from PyroScience – the best you can have – but I’m always looking for new innovative sensors that me be cheaper than my ‘Rolls-Royce’,” Surbeck said.
To compare the sensors, Surbeck devised an experiment where both sensors were subjected to the air samples over the course of an hour. Serial output was run through an Arduino PRO, then to a serial to USB converter for a display on a PC. What he found was that the LuminOx Optical Oxygen Sensor gave almost identical results to the Piccolo2.
Although the experiment has not been replicated, the Piccolo2 cost 10 times as much as the LuminOx Optical Oxygen Sensor module. This makes SST’s sensor worthy of a serious consideration for researchers who need an accurate, cost-effective way to measure oxygen levels.