Temperature sensor chips are semiconductor dies or packages that have built-in temperature sensors. Temperature sensor chips are employed in controlling temperatures of various electric and electronic instruments. A temperature sensor chip infers temperature by featuring some changes in physical characteristic of electronic equipments. There are many different types of temperature sensors. Examples include thermocouples, resistance temperature devices (RTDs), infrared radiation sensors, bimetallic devices, liquid expansion devices, and change-of-state sensors. A temperature sensor chip protects equipment from high temperatures, which may damage the equipment. Thermoelectric thermometers, which use thermocouples are used in measuring temperatures. Resistance temperature detectors operate on the principle of changes in electrical resistance of pure metals. They are also characterized by a linear positive change in resistance with the temperature. Other temperature sensor chips are also commonly available.
There are several principles on which temperature sensor chips function. Infrared radiation sensor chips are based on the heating effect of infrared radiations. Change of state due to heating is detected by change-of-state sensor chips. An RTD interface temperature chip is more accurate and more linear than thermocouple and is generally much more costly and slow responding. An RTD interface temperature chip is able to sense temperatures with extreme repeatability and low drift error from -200 °C to +850° C. A temperature semiconductor is produced in the form of ICs. The fundamental design of a temperature semiconductor results from the fact that semiconductor diodes have temperature-sensitive voltage and current characteristics. A temperature IC can be analog or digital and both have several variations. The use of an IC temperature sensor is limited to applications where the temperature is within a - 55 °C to 150 °C range. The measurement range of an IC temperature sensor may be small as compared to that of thermocouples and an RTD interface temperature chip, but they have several advantages. For example, they are small, accurate, and inexpensive. With the higher level of integration now feasible, a digital IC temperature sensor can report both local and remote temperatures, monitor other system parameters, control fans, or warn when a specific temperature is exceeded. A computer temperature sensor helps in maintaining an appropriate environment inside a computer for proper functioning of all the hardware and protects it from being damaged. Temperature sensor chips are designed and manufactured according to various industrial specifications.
Temperature sensor chips are used in many applications. Some examples include personal computers, air conditioners, refrigerators, water heaters, microwaves, hot-wire anemometers, industrial instrumentations, and laboratory-quality measurements. Temperature sensor chips continue to evolve, providing a varied array of functions, features, and interfaces.