Mitsubishi recently announced what is believed to be the world's first compact metal corrosion sensor that is so minute that it can be mounted on printed circuit boards. The sensor utilizes proprietary metal corrosion monitoring technology that detects the 'degree' of corrosion of metal component that is caused by corrosive gases such as atmospheric sulfur compounds.
Using multiple sensors deployed with differing levels of corrosion resistance, corrosion can be measured in stages and prevent equipment failure.
As a world-first, the metal corrosion sensor is an incredible feat. It has the potential to be used in almost any situation where a printed circuit board is used—that's a lot!
An example deployment of the corrosion sensor. Image courtesy of Mitsubishi.
How the Metal Corrosion Sensor Functions
Incorporating a thin metal film and resistors that measure in at a tiny 1.6mm x 0.8mm, the corrosion sensor features an incredibly simple structure that can be mounted directly onto printed circuit boards. This eliminates any need to install other monitoring and measuring instruments such as external corrosion sensors.
The corrosion sensor works by measuring the degree of corrosion in stages. This is done by measuring the increase in electrical resistance of the corrosion sensors, and resistance can be adjusted by changing the thickness and composition of their metal content.
A configuration if the metal corrosion sensor (left) and detected resistance values (right). Image courtesy of Mitsubishi.
When multiple corrosion sensors with different resistance levels are deployed, the 'degree' of corrosion can easily be measured and detected to prevent equipment breakdown and failure.
The size of the sensor does not vary regardless of which material is being used, how thick the metal film is, or the resistance level of the sensor.
Whilst the sensor has a wide range of applications across various industries and verticals, Mitsubishi plans to deploy it across their own industrial equipment portfolio. Mitsubishi's sensor is useful and deployable in virtually any product using printed circuit boards where corrosion is a pain point.