Calumino brings thermal sensing to mass market applications

There’s a new sensor on the block that might just render PIRs obsolete. Calumino promises to bring high-quality thermal sensing to the masses at competitive prices. 

There’s a new product on the market that promises to overhaul the way we perceive and interact with our surroundings. Calumino is the brainchild of a visionary team in the high-tech sensing world led by Dr. Marek Steffanson. With a name derived from the union of ‘Calorie’ and ‘Luminosity’, Calumino introduces the world’s premier thermal sensor for mass-market applications, and with it, a whole new way to gather, understand and use data.  Leading the commercial expansion is Bart de Jong, the Commercial Director of Calumino, whom we recently caught up with for a brief discussion about their ambitious plans to revolutionize the industry. 

At its core, the Calumino Thermal Sensor (CTS) operates on a simple yet profound principle: it sees heat instead of light. Through a proprietary blend of cutting-edge hardware and advanced artificial intelligence, this sensor module goes beyond the usual limits, offering unparalleled data without encroaching upon individual privacy. By rendering people as nondescript thermal signatures against a backdrop of ambient heat, the CTS ensures that privacy remains sacrosanct at every level of operation. 

But the innovation doesn’t stop here. Calumino’s strategic positioning extends far beyond the realms of mere detection. From occupancy monitoring to critical asset management, the CTS caters to a myriad of industries with seamless precision:  

“Our micro-optical mechanical system (MOMS) enables unprecedented price and performance for infrared sensing. It offers fundamentally lower thermo-electrical noise than thermoelectric sensors (bolometers and PIRs), resulting in superior accuracy and stability. Yet the CTS has the same assembly process like a basic camera module, enabling low-cost mass manufacturing with standard machinery,” says Bart de Jong, Calumino’s Commercial Director.  

This means they can offer high-caliber technology usually reserved for defense at a highly competitive market price. By democratizing thermal imaging technology, Calumino bridges the chasm between high-end bolometer systems, which are military-grade and high-cost, and budget-friendly thermopile alternatives, which offer weak sensitivity. This makes thermal sensing accessible to a global audience like never before. The pricing is said to be one-tenth of the cost of a microbolometer. 

The applications of the CTS are as diverse as they are transformative. It comes as a complete solution, hardware, and AI with the opportunity to easily integrate into existing Building Management Systems (BMS). Calumino’s inhouse-developed AI runs on a low-cost MCU and is aimed at solving specific use cases across the built environment. By harnessing the power of edge processing, the CTS enables precise human presence detection in any environment, facilitating dynamic control of lighting, HVAC systems, and access protocols. Moreover, its ability to decipher human behavioral patterns opens the door to a wealth of opportunities, from optimizing traffic flow to enhancing space utilization and beyond. 

“Perhaps the most compelling aspect of Calumino’s innovation lies in its capacity to capture environmental data with unparalleled accuracy. By monitoring thermal behavior in real-time, the CTS empowers users to identify trends, assess absolute temperatures, and correlate movement with, for example, thermal comfort, whether it’s optimizing HVAC performance or designing spaces with human well-being in mind” he adds. 

The true magic of Calumino’s vision lies in its ability to trigger actions with insights gleaned from its rich data streams. By setting customized temperature alerts, users can proactively address potential hazards, optimize energy consumption, and streamline operational efficiencies with unprecedented precision. From fire detection to water leak prevention, the CTS serves as a guardian angel, watching over spaces with unwavering vigilance. 

In conjunction with Casambi, Calumino’s influence on lighting strategies can be immense. By integrating data feeds from CTS sensors with the Casambi system, lighting automation ascends to new realms of sophistication and efficiency. 

“Integrating Calumino’s CTS with Casambi’s advanced wireless control ecosystem transforms everyday lighting and HVAC operations. By leveraging non-intrusive, privacy-centric people sensing, we open up a myriad of possibilities not only to enhance environmental efficiency but also to optimize processes across facility management, safety, security, and room optimization. It’s about creating smarter, more responsive spaces that adapt to human presence seamlessly and intelligently.” 

Calumino represents significant progress and opportunity. According to Bart, this product is poised to render the PIR motion sensor obsolete. It combines the smarts of an AI camera with the privacy and cost-effectiveness of a motion sensor to offer unparalleled situational awareness, location-based innovations, and super-charged automation.