Monday, September 5, 2016


Received a set of 9 gas sensor for Arduino from Aliexpress ( China ).
You can find a table with some details of the gas sensors in this post.
MQ-8 MQ-9 MQ-135

MQ-4 MQ-5 MQ-6

MQ-2 MQ-3 MQ-4

The  PCBs for the sensors all look the same with pins
  • A0 Analog signal
  • D0 Digital signal (treshhold controlled by pot meter)
  • GND Ground
  • VCC Power (+5V)
The PCB has a pot meter and two leds
  • Power led
  • D0 level led
The D0 level led turns on if the analog signal comes above the threshold regulated by the pot meter. 
< ThresholdLed OffD0 pin signal  1
>ThresholdLed OnD0 pin signal 0

Quick scanning the info also learned me that the MQ-7 needs alternating 60 seconds 5v, 90 seconds 1.4 volt ( ) . The hardware for all the sensors looks the same but it seem there are some differences! 
Also storage conditions (when not in use) of these sensors seem to be important.
When starting this project i expected that i could test some of these sensors and publish this the same day on my blog. After collecting some info i decided to make this a general info start article and publish the test in separated articles.

Burn-in time

Reading more information i found that also  burn-in time is needed for this sensors Some datasheets use the term "preheat", but it is the time to burn-in the sensor. This is meant to make the sensor readings more consistent. 
A time of 12 or 24 hours is usually used for the burn-in time.The Burn-in is achieved by applying normal power to the sensor (to the heater and with the 'A' and 'B' pins connected, and with a load-resistor). In some special cases a specific burn-in is needed. See the datasheet if the sensor needs such a specific burn-in.
After the "burn-in time", the heater needs to be on for about 3 minutes before the readings become stable.
The sensors that use 5V or 6V for the internal heater do get warm. They can easily get 50 or 60 degrees Celsius. If it is used in a battery operated device, a transistor or logic-level mosfet could also be used to switch the heater on and off. I also want to "burn-in" with a power supply and not with batteries
After creating the circuit it could take more than 24 hours to get the first consistent measurements. 
As details can be found in the datasheets of the sensors (Links included in the table in this article).

Test gas

To test the sensors some gasses would be needed. Some ideas to test:
Ethanol (Alcohol) 
Butane (Weed burner gas)
Gas from a cigarette lighter
Smoke ( from a fire )
Perfume / Aftershave
Car exhaust
Car fuel
Hydrogen (created by electrolysis or metal with strong acid)

My gas sensors:

MQ2Methane, Butane, LPG, Smoke Datasheet
MQ3Alcohol, Ethanol, SmokeDatasheet
MQ4Methane, CNG GasDatasheet
MQ5Liquified gas, Coal gasDatasheet
MQ6LPG, Isobutane, PropaneDatasheet
MQ7Sensitive Detector CO gas
(Needs alternating 60 seconds 5v, 90 seconds 1.4 volt)

MQ9CO, Flammable gassesDatasheet
MQ135Air quality / Hazardous gas
(Benzene, Alcohol, smoke, NH3)

Item in the first column "Sensor" will links to the "blog label" of the sensor to find all articles in this blog labeled with this sensor
"Datasheet" will link to a datasheet of the sensor.
"Tested" will updated with a link to the blog article with the test.
I hope to publish in the next blog article a small test of the MQ2 sensor!


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