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This page covers color sensor or color detector basics. This color sensor acts as detector which converts light signal into useful measurable form.

Sensor: The device which converts one form of energy into another form of energy is referred as sensor. The value sensed can be directly indicated to the human being or indirectly readable with the help of ADC (Analog to Digital Converter) and display unit.

Color Sensor: The sensor used for color sensing is referred as color sensor. The color sensing helps in color identification or in sorting of objects by different colors. Normally color sensors are developed based on the principle of identification of wavelength of particular table. The color identification can be done for the light which falls under visible light range i.e. 380 nm to 780 nm. The same has been mentioned in the table-1 below.

Color Wavelength Range
Violet 380 to 410 nm
Indigo 410 to 450 nm
Blue 450 to 510 nm
Green 510 to 560 nm
Yellow 560 to 600 nm
Orange 600 to 630 nm
Red 630 to 780 nm
Table-1: Color vs Wavelength

Color Detector

color detector with color sensor

The circuit made using LDR (Light Dependent Resistor) or Photo Diode, basic LEDs (i.e. Red, Green, Blue), Analog to Digital Converter, Display unit, Micro-controller unit is referred as color detector. Depending upon requirements color detectors are developed. Now-a-days color sensors are available with built-in IR (Infrared) blocking filter. This filter minimizes effects of unwanted IR light signals falling under sunlight and other unwanted light source regions. Hence IR filter helps in accurate colour measurement in color sensor or color detector device. The figure depicts basic construction of simple light detector.

Table-2 below mentions color sensors from popular vendors with their basic specifications and model numbers.

Vendor Color sensor Model Description
AMS AG. (1.)TCS3103, TS3104
(2.)TCS3200, TCS3210
(3.)TCS3404, TCS3414
(1.) RGB light to voltage converter
(2.) Programmable colour light to frequency converter
(3.) Programmable colour light to freq. converter with sync. input for color sensing synchronization and built-in IR filter.
(4.)Colour light to digital converter I2C.
EMX Industries Inc. ColorMax-1000 Series This color sensor can recognize 15 colors and RGB intensity.
Hamamatsu Photonics RGB color sensors (S11059-01WT) I2C interface-compatible color sensor
Table-2:Color Sensor Vendors

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