Honeywell has introduced a new device that allows manufacturers of fire and security detection technologies to design smaller, less obtrusive wireless-based products without sacrificing reliability or performance. The new Anisotropic Magnetoresistive (AMR) Sensor ICs, Nanopower Series have higher sensitivity and more reliability than “traditional” sensors, yet consume less energy. They are also smaller and therefore allow greater flexibility in design at a lower cost. Typical product applications include smoke detectors and door/window alarms. In the case of the latter, the sensor will immediately send a signal to a wireless module that transmits that signal to a central control unit for processing as soon as a door or window is opened, removing the magnet out of the sensor detection range. On smoke detectors, the sensor is used as an alarm test switch where an external magnet is brought in the detection range of the sensor to check correct operation. Smaller, more durable and reliable than reed switches, at the same sensitivity and essentially the same cost, the new AMR Sensor ICs, Nanopower Series are ideal for battery powered applications where previously only reed switches could be used due to very low power requirements and large air gap needs. Nicholas Roche, product leader at Honeywell Sensing and Control, says that the new nanopower technology is a game changer, “It is highly sensitive,” he explains, “and more reliable than ‘traditional’ switches that can break and tend to be less stable over time.” “Most important, however, is that our new AMR Sensor ICs consume less power which means batteries need to be replaced less often – a major advantage to manufacturers and installers alike, and overcoming one of the major hurdles regarding the wider take up of wireless detectors.” The sensors are designed for use in a wide range of battery-operated applications including water and gas meters, electricity meters, exercise equipment, handheld computers, scanners, as well as white goods such as dishwashers, microwaves, washing machines, refrigerators and coffee machines. They can also be used in medical equipment such as hospital beds, medication dispensing cabinets, infusion pumps, and consumer electronics such as notebook computers, tablets, and cordless speakers.