Articles | Volume 5, issue 2
J. Sens. Sens. Syst., 5, 293–299, 2016
J. Sens. Sens. Syst., 5, 293–299, 2016

Regular research article 28 Jul 2016

Regular research article | 28 Jul 2016

Simulation model for the evaluation and design of miniaturized non-resonant photoacoustic gas sensors

Jochen Huber1,2, Katrin Schmitt1, and Jürgen Wöllenstein1,2 Jochen Huber et al.
  • 1Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques IPM, Heidenhofstr. 8, 79110 Freiburg, Germany
  • 2Laboratory for Gas Sensors, Department of Microsystems Engineering-IMTEK, University of Freiburg, Georges-Koehler-Allee 102, 79110 Freiburg, Germany

Abstract. This publication reports the derivation and the implementation of a simulation model that describes non-resonant photoacoustic gas sensors. The photoacoustic effect is modelled in detail for the successive steps of radiation emission, stimulation of molecules, collisional relaxation processes and finally the pressure formation in a closed gas cell. The photoacoustic effect offers great potential in the development of selective, miniaturized gas sensor systems. We verify and discuss the results of our model assuming typical parameters and values in indoor CO2 sensing applications. We set up a sensor system for experimental verification of the simulated data and discuss the results. The results of the simulation model are in good accordance with the experimental data and can therefore be used as a novel and efficient tool for the development of non-resonant photoacoustic gas sensor systems.

Short summary
A simulation model to predict system behaviour of photoacoustic CO2 sensors is presented. The sensor output signal that depends on the CO2 concentration can be simulated if the boundary conditions of the system are known. A comparison of simulated values with experimental results is made. There is good accordance between simulation and experiments. Photoacoustic gas sensors offer great potential for miniaturized gas sensors. The simulation model is an effective tool for further developments.