“World’s most reliable” UWB sensor for smart homes unveiled by Novelda

Sensor manufacturer and electronics brand Novelda AS has announced the launch of its latest Ultra-Wideband (UWB) sensors for smart home and building automation to give any device the ability to accurately sense human presence.

According to the company, its groundbreaking UWB impulse radar can detect human presence and motion providing more accurate touch-free interaction with everyday products including laptops, smart refrigerators and lighting.

This news follows Novelda‘s announcement that it has raised NOK 400 million (€39m)(Equivalent US $45M) in a pre-IPO private placement to accelerate growth and further development of UWB sensors bringing the total financing secured to US $130m (€115m).

The Novelda UWB sensor works by detecting tiny movements made when we breathe to perceive human presence. The company says that the sensor is so robust it can sense human presence even if subjects are lying under a duvet or wearing several layers of clothing.

Measuring only 12mm x 12mm, including antennas, Novelda’s Ultra-Wideband Sensor is the smallest and most accurate impulse radar sensor available. Causing no impact on product design, it can be completely hidden in a device and can operate through glass, plastic or wood.

Jan-Bjørnar Lund, CEO at Novelda, commented: “This next generation of human sensors designed for smart home and intelligent building automation will make environments more context-aware to improve interactive experiences, reduce the cost of powering a device when no one is around, and extend screen life by preventing unnecessary backlighting, reducing overall energy consumption. Our sensors have been evaluated in challenging real-world conditions and have demonstrated robust performance leagues better than other comparable solutions. UWB is going to drive the next revolution in wireless technology and we believe it will be as widely used as Bluetooth.”

Novelda UWB Sensor measures 12mm by 12mm

Thomas Möller, managing director of Steinel, which collaborated with Novelda, added: “Steinel True Presence is a game changing sensor that will enable a new era in building intelligence and energy efficiency. We collaborated with Novelda to develop True Presence and it is now the best presence sensor in the market, providing absolutely reliable information on human presence or absence. As a result, we have been able to help our hotel customers improve energy efficiency and cut costs in HVAC by 12%.”

Multiple use cases for Novelda Ultra-Wideband Sensor include touchless-screen displays, lighting and HVAC control and wireless health monitors, the company says. Novelda UWB is used by customers worldwide in smart home, building automation and leading consumer electronic devices. The world’s largest laptop manufacturer, Lenovo, uses a Novelda Ultra-Wideband Sensor in their premium laptops. In PCs, the sensor enable features such as auto wake-up and auto lock to increase security and extend battery life, for lighting and HVAC room sensors save significant energy. Other customers use UWB sensors for vital sign detection in baby and sleep monitors, the company says.

Ultra-Wideband (UWB) is said to provide a highly accurate, low-power, robust and secure wireless technology for sensing, positioning, movement and distance. Especially in challenging environments, UWB technology outperforms other technologies such as Passive InfraRed or Time of Flight sensors in terms of accuracy, robustness and security.

Ideally suited for the bandwidth needs, cost, power consumption and physical size requirements for next generation consumer electronic devices and smart home appliances. UWB wireless sensors can function in the proximity of other radios without interference.

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