TI's world's smallest IR temp sensor hands-on

This week we got the chance to speak with Daniel Mar from Texas Instruments Product Marketing who showed off what TI notes is the TMP006, the world's smallest digital infrared temperature sensor. This little component is a 1.6 x 1.6 mm fully-integrated temperature sensor and was shown off working inside a Dell laptop as well as in a modified smartphone which shows the temperature of any item with an outward-facing sensor at its back. Behold the power of tiny, tiny sensors.

On the laptop you'll see how the sensor is placed on the motherboard looking down at the case, seeking information that'll allow the manufacturer to seek out solutions to "burning leg syndrome." The sensor itself does not make contact with the pieces of machinery whose temperature it measures, unlike most temperature sensors, yet is able to give more accurate results than other solutions anyway.

Below you'll see a chart that shows the printed circuit board (PCB) temperature of a system (not the laptop seen above, just an example), as well as the actual temperature of the case of the device that's being tested by TI's solution. TI's infrared temperature sensor's results are shown on the red line – here you'll see that TI's solution follows the correct temperature (the actual case temperature) most accurately.

This chart comes from a release on Wireless Design & Development from Texas Instruments written by the same man you see in the video above, Daniel Mar, who offers the following thought on the matter:

"Can't touch this? For designers and consumers alike, the question of whether the newest geekiest gadget is too hot to touch may be a sensory concern of the past. Thanks to IR temperature measurements, our next generation gadgets can achieve the trifecta: safer, faster, and thinner." – Mar

Have a peek at the timeline below to stay up-to-date on all things Texas Instruments as they keep the mobile and not-so-mobile world up to date and future-rolling!