The principles of gas measuring technology

Protecting lives and plants through reliable gas detection.


Table of contents

  1. How has gas detection developed over the years?
  2. What are gases?
  3. What are the different gas hazards?
  4. Which sensors and measuring principles are used in gas detection?
  5. What do explosion protection and explosion limits mean?
  6. Which certificates and standards are required for gas detectors?


How has gas detection developed over the years?

In mining, hazardous levels of gas concentration can build up all the time, causing powerful explosions and accidents. The search for methods for the early detection of hazardous gases, such as methane and carbon monoxide, was therefore already of crucial importance in the 19th and 20th centuries to ensure the safety of miners.

The first method of gas detection involved the use of canaries. For this, a canary was kept in a small cage and monitored regularly. If the bird displayed any signs of stress or illness, this was taken as a clear warning signal for the presence of hazardous gases.

©MSR-Electronic GmbH, gas detection for different gases ©MSR-Traffic GmbH
©MSR-Electronic GmbH, gas detection for different gases

To protect the animal's health, flame lamps would then be used to determine hazardous levels of gas concentration.


For this, the miners lit the flames in a fresh air environment. If the flame shrank in size or began to go out, this indicated a low level of oxygen in the air. If, on the other hand, the flame increased in size, this was a sign that methane - as well as oxygen - was present in the mine.

Gas warning technology has continued to develop to this day. Today, precise, compact and robust gas detectors are used to monitor dangerous gas concentrations and combustible vapours.

Various technologies such as catalytic, electrochemical, infrared, ultrasonic or MPS technologies offer the best possible options for monitoring and analysing the ambient air. These allow safe and reliable gas detection in a wide range of applications and ensure maximum protection for lives and plants.

The gas detectors must monitor various gases and vapours safely and continuously in changing conditions. This requires maximum reliability, flexibility and stability in order to protect the safety of people and plants in the best possible way.

In addition, not every gas detector may be used in every working environment. It is therefore necessary to check whether the required device specifications are met before use. These device requirements are explained in the relevant standards and regulations.

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MSR-Electronic is a manufacturer of fixed gas warning systems with decades of experience in the field of gas measurement technology.  The international company with headquarters in Germany has a wide range of methods for the detection of toxic, combustible gases and oxygen. On this basis MSR-Electronic develops individual gas sensors, controllers and warning devices for many applications, such as  parking garages, tunnelspetrochemical industry  or  shipping. The products meet more than the  general standards and regulations  and can therefore guarantee the safety of the plantIf you have any questions please send us an email or give us a call.