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State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "State-of-the-Art Sensors Technologies".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2021) | Viewed by 29407

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Computer Science, University Politehnica of Bucharest, 060042 Bucharest, Romania
Interests: mobile wireless networks and computing applications, pervasive services, context-awareness, and people-centric sensing
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Department of Telecommunications, University Politehnica of Bucharest, 060042 Bucharest, Romania
Interests: internet of things; mobile communications; wireless networks; communications security; radio propagation
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Department of Analytical Chemistry, Director Doctoral School of Chemistry, University of Bucharest, 4-12 Regina Elisabeta Blvd., 030018 Bucharest, Romania
Interests: sensors and biosensors addressing current emerging problems of clinical, food and environmental importance; bioanalytical chemistry focusing on investigations of basic biochemical mechanisms at bio-interfaces; biomimetic materials and artificial receptors
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Telecommunications, University Politehnica of Bucharest, 060042 Bucharest, Romania
Interests: signal processing; internet of things; mobile communications; wireless systems; communications security
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue will provide a comprehensive overview of state-of-the-art sensors science and technology in Romania. The theme of the Special Issue is “From Sensors to IoT and the Digital Revolution”, as it is intended to underscore the importance of IoT technologies in bringing about the digital revolution and making it a reality.

We invite research articles that will consolidate our understanding of the state-of-the-art in this area. The Special Issue will publish highly-rated full research and review manuscripts addressing the above topics.

The covered topics will span from sensing devices and principles (including chemical, physical, biological, and optical sensors), to sensor technologies (including micro- and nanofabrication, film, and printed technologies), to sensor systems (including sensor electronics, energy harvesting, sensor networks, and Internet of Things), to applications in different scenarios (including industrial, automotive, environmental, food and agriculture, biomedical, and other fields).

Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Physical, chemical, and biological sensors and microsystems;
  • Sensors materials and technology;
  • Theory, modeling, design, and simulation;
  • Sensor electronics and signal processing;
  • Sensor systems and applications;
  • Packaging and assembly technology;
  • Industrial sensors and IoT protocols;
  • Advanced communications and connectivity, and 5G technologies;
  • Sensors and the technology advances brought by artificial intelligence;
  • Cybersecurity, data security, and privacy technologies for sensory data;
  • Data and the Internet of Things—volume, velocity, and variability;
  • Green Technologies—the environment, sustainability, and the circular economy;
  • From sensors and sensor systems;
  • Sensors and biosensors addressing current emerging problems of clinical, food and environmental importance biosensors;
  • Novel electrode materials, nanostructured materials, surface–modified electrodes and conducting polymers;
  • Acoustic and surface plasmon resonance transducers for immunoassay;
  • Actuators and micromachines;
  • Point-of-care devices;
  • Wireless sensor networks;

Prof. Dr. Ciprian Dobre
Prof. Dr. Octavian Fratu
Prof. Dr. Camelia Bala
Prof. Dr. Simona Halunga
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sensors is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Research

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11 pages, 2265 KiB  
Article
Capacitive Photodetector Thin-Film Cells of Cu-As2S3-Cu as Revealed by Dielectric Spectroscopy
by Paul Ganea, Gabriel Socol, Sorin Zamfira, Nicolae Creţu, Elena Matei and Adam Lőrinczi
Sensors 2022, 22(3), 1143; https://doi.org/10.3390/s22031143 - 2 Feb 2022
Viewed by 1334
Abstract
The As2S3-Cu interface was studied by dielectric spectroscopy measurements on Cu-As2S3-Cu thin film heterostructure samples to assess the charge carriers’ contribution to the electrical properties of such an interface. Three-dimensional printed masks ensured good reproducibility [...] Read more.
The As2S3-Cu interface was studied by dielectric spectroscopy measurements on Cu-As2S3-Cu thin film heterostructure samples to assess the charge carriers’ contribution to the electrical properties of such an interface. Three-dimensional printed masks ensured good reproducibility during the PLD deposition of heterostructure samples. The samples were tested for electrical conductivity and AC photoconductivity by dielectric spectroscopy measurements. DC bias voltages and light were applied to the samples. The electrical capacity of the thin film heterostructure can be modified electrically and optically. We observed long-term photoconductivity with a time dependency that was not exponential, and a quick change of the electrical capacity, indicating the potential of the heterostructure cells as photodetector candidates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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25 pages, 4148 KiB  
Article
Performance Evaluation of Information Gathering from Edge Devices in a Complex of Smart Buildings
by Florin Lăcătușu, Anca Daniela Ionita, Marian Lăcătușu and Adriana Olteanu
Sensors 2022, 22(3), 1002; https://doi.org/10.3390/s22031002 - 27 Jan 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2266
Abstract
The use of monitoring systems based on cloud computing has become common for smart buildings. However, the dilemma of centralization versus decentralization, in terms of gathering information and making the right decisions based on it, remains. Performance, dependent on the system design, does [...] Read more.
The use of monitoring systems based on cloud computing has become common for smart buildings. However, the dilemma of centralization versus decentralization, in terms of gathering information and making the right decisions based on it, remains. Performance, dependent on the system design, does matter for emergency detection, where response time and loading behavior become very important. We studied several design options based on edge computing and containers for a smart building monitoring system that sends alerts to the responsible personnel when necessary. The study evaluated performance, including a qualitative analysis and load testing, for our experimental settings. From 700+ edge nodes, we obtained response times that were 30% lower for the public cloud versus the local solution. For up to 100 edge nodes, the values were better for the latter, and in between, they were rather similar. Based on an interpretation of the results, we developed recommendations for five real-world configurations, and we present the design choices adopted in our development for a complex of smart buildings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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23 pages, 5132 KiB  
Article
Radio Frequency over Fibre Optics Repeater for Mission-Critical Communications: Design, Execution and Test
by Răzvan-George Bărtuşică, Mădălin Mihai, Simona Halunga and Octavian Fratu
Sensors 2022, 22(2), 612; https://doi.org/10.3390/s22020612 - 13 Jan 2022
Viewed by 5242
Abstract
This paper presents a technical solution that addresses mission-critical communications by extending the radio frequency coverage area using a flexible and scalable architecture. One of the main objectives is to improve both the reaction time and the coordination between mission-critical practitioners, also called [...] Read more.
This paper presents a technical solution that addresses mission-critical communications by extending the radio frequency coverage area using a flexible and scalable architecture. One of the main objectives is to improve both the reaction time and the coordination between mission-critical practitioners, also called public protection and disaster relief users, that operate in emergency scenarios. Mission-critical services such as voice and data should benefit from reliable communication systems that offer high availability, prioritization and flexible architecture. In this paper, we considered Terrestrial Trunked Radio (TETRA), the mobile radio standard used for mission-critical communications, as it has been designed in this respect and is widely used by first responder organizations. Even if RF coverage is designed before network deployment and continuously updated during the lifetime of the technology, some white areas may exist and should be covered by supplementary base stations or repeaters. The model presented in this paper is an optical repeater for TETRA standard that can offer up to 52.6 dB downlink, 65.6 dB uplink gain and up to 3.71 km coverage distance in a radiating cable installation scenario. The design in not limited, as it can be extended to several different mobile radio standards using the same principle. Flexibility and scalability attributes are taken into consideration, as they can build a cost-effective deployment considering both capital and operational expenditures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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18 pages, 7717 KiB  
Article
Shape Sensing of Hyper-Redundant Robots Using an AHRS IMU Sensor Network
by Ciprian Lapusan, Olimpiu Hancu and Ciprian Rad
Sensors 2022, 22(1), 373; https://doi.org/10.3390/s22010373 - 4 Jan 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2539
Abstract
The paper proposes a novel approach for shape sensing of hyper-redundant robots based on an AHRS IMU sensor network embedded into the structure of the robot. The proposed approach uses the data from the sensor network to directly calculate the kinematic parameters of [...] Read more.
The paper proposes a novel approach for shape sensing of hyper-redundant robots based on an AHRS IMU sensor network embedded into the structure of the robot. The proposed approach uses the data from the sensor network to directly calculate the kinematic parameters of the robot in modules operational space reducing thus the computational time and facilitating implementation of advanced real-time feedback system for shape sensing. In the paper the method is applied for shape sensing and pose estimation of an articulated joint-based hyper-redundant robot with identical 2-DoF modules serially connected. Using a testing method based on HIL techniques the authors validate the computed kinematic model and the computed shape of the robot prototype. A second testing method is used to validate the end effector pose using an external sensory system. The experimental results obtained demonstrate the feasibility of using this type of sensor network and the effectiveness of the proposed shape sensing approach for hyper-redundant robots. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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22 pages, 5117 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Compromising Video Disturbances through Power Line
by Bogdan Trip, Vlad Butnariu, Mădălin Vizitiu, Alexandru Boitan and Simona Halunga
Sensors 2022, 22(1), 267; https://doi.org/10.3390/s22010267 - 30 Dec 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1856
Abstract
In this article, we present results on research performed in the TEMPEST domain, which studies the electromagnetic disturbances generated unintentionally by electronic equipment as well as the methods to protect the information processed by this equipment against these electromagnetic phenomena. The highest vulnerability [...] Read more.
In this article, we present results on research performed in the TEMPEST domain, which studies the electromagnetic disturbances generated unintentionally by electronic equipment as well as the methods to protect the information processed by this equipment against these electromagnetic phenomena. The highest vulnerability of information leakage is attributed to the display video signal from the TEMPEST domain perspective. Examples of far-range propagation on a power line of this type of disturbance will be illustrated for the first time. Thus, the examples will highlight the possibility of recovering processed information at distances of 1, 10 and 50 m. There are published articles studying electromagnetic disturbances generated by electronic equipment propagating on power cables of such equipment but no studies on their long-distance propagation. Our research aims to raise awareness in the scientific community and the general public of the existence of such vulnerabilities that can compromise confidential or sensitive information that can make the difference between success or failure in the business sector, for example, or can harm personal privacy, which is also important for us all. Countermeasures to reduce or even eliminate these threats will also be presented based on the analysis of the signal-to noise-ratio recorded during our research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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29 pages, 10586 KiB  
Article
Robotic Railway Multi-Sensing and Profiling Unit Based on Artificial Intelligence and Data Fusion
by Marius Minea, Cătălin Marian Dumitrescu and Mihai Dima
Sensors 2021, 21(20), 6876; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21206876 - 16 Oct 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3133
Abstract
This article presents the research and results of field tests and simulations regarding an autonomous/robotic railway vehicle, designed to collect multiple information on safety and functional parameters of a surface railway and/or subway section, based on data fusion and machine learning. The maintenance [...] Read more.
This article presents the research and results of field tests and simulations regarding an autonomous/robotic railway vehicle, designed to collect multiple information on safety and functional parameters of a surface railway and/or subway section, based on data fusion and machine learning. The maintenance of complex railways, or subway networks with long operating times is a difficult process and intensive resources consuming. The proposed solution delivers human operators in the fault management service and operations from the time-consuming task of railway inspection and measurements, by integrating several sensors and collecting most relevant information on railway, associated automation equipment and infrastructure on a single intelligent platform. The robotic cart integrates autonomy, remote sensing, artificial intelligence, and ability to detect even infrastructural anomalies. Moreover, via a future process of complex statistical filtering of data, it is foreseen that the solution might be configured to offer second-order information about infrastructure changes, such as land sliding, water flooding, or similar modifications. Results of simulations and field tests show the ability of the platform to integrate several fault management operations in a single process, useful in increasing railway capacity and resilience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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11 pages, 4563 KiB  
Article
A Novel Amperometric Biosensor Based on Poly(allylamine hydrochloride) for Determination of Ethanol in Beverages
by Oana Maria Istrate, Lucian Rotariu and Camelia Bala
Sensors 2021, 21(19), 6510; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21196510 - 29 Sep 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2113
Abstract
Herein, we report on a new type of ethanol biosensor based on a screen-printed electrode modified with poly(allylamine hydrochloride). The alcohol dehydrogenase was immobilized on the surface of the sensor using the sol–gel matrix. Working parameters such as applied potential, pH, NAD+ [...] Read more.
Herein, we report on a new type of ethanol biosensor based on a screen-printed electrode modified with poly(allylamine hydrochloride). The alcohol dehydrogenase was immobilized on the surface of the sensor using the sol–gel matrix. Working parameters such as applied potential, pH, NAD+ concentration, storage conditions were optimized. A response range between 0.05 and 2 mM was found with a sensitivity of 13.45 ± 0.67 µA/mM·cm2 and a detection limit of 20 µM. The developed biosensor was used to detect ethanol in commercial beverages with good accuracy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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22 pages, 6855 KiB  
Article
Voltammetric Determination of Levodopa Using Mesoporous Carbon—Modified Screen-Printed Carbon Sensors
by Dorin Dăscălescu and Constantin Apetrei
Sensors 2021, 21(18), 6301; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21186301 - 20 Sep 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2439
Abstract
Levodopa is a precursor of dopamine, having important beneficial effects in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. In this study, levodopa was accurately detected by means of cyclic voltammetry using carbon-based (C-SPCE), mesoporous carbon (MC-SPCE) and ordered mesoporous carbon (OMC-SPCE)-modified screen-printed sensors. Screen-printed carbon [...] Read more.
Levodopa is a precursor of dopamine, having important beneficial effects in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. In this study, levodopa was accurately detected by means of cyclic voltammetry using carbon-based (C-SPCE), mesoporous carbon (MC-SPCE) and ordered mesoporous carbon (OMC-SPCE)-modified screen-printed sensors. Screen-printed carbon sensors were initially used for the electrochemical detection of levodopa in a 10−3 M solution at pH 7.0. The mesoporous carbon with an organized structure led to better electroanalysis results and to lower detection and quantification limits of the OMC-SPCE sensor as compared to the other two studied sensors. The range of linearity obtained and the low values of the detection (0.290 µM) and quantification (0.966 µM) limit demonstrate the high sensitivity and accuracy of the method for the determination of levodopa in real samples. Therefore, levodopa was detected by means of OMC-SPCE in three dietary supplements produced by different manufacturers and having various concentrations of the active compound, levodopa. The results obtained by cyclic voltammetry were compared with those obtained by using the FTIR method and no significant differences were observed. OMC-SPCE proved to be stable, and the electrochemical responses did not vary by more than 3% in repeated immersions in a solution with the same concentration of levodopa. In addition, the interfering compounds did not significantly influence the peaks related to the presence of levodopa in the solution to be analyzed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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16 pages, 6576 KiB  
Article
Improving the Event-Based Classification Accuracy in Pit-Drilling Operations: An Application by Neural Networks and Median Filtering of the Acceleration Input Signal Data
by Sarahi Nicole Castro Pérez and Stelian Alexandru Borz
Sensors 2021, 21(18), 6288; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21186288 - 19 Sep 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2058
Abstract
Forestry is a complex economic sector which is relying on resource and process monitoring data. Most of the forest operations such as planting and harvesting are supported by the use of tools and machines, and their monitoring has been traditionally done by the [...] Read more.
Forestry is a complex economic sector which is relying on resource and process monitoring data. Most of the forest operations such as planting and harvesting are supported by the use of tools and machines, and their monitoring has been traditionally done by the use of pen-and-paper time studies. Nevertheless, modern data collection and analysis methods involving different kinds of platforms and machine learning techniques have been studied lately with the aim of easing the data management process. By their outcomes, improvements are still needed to reach a close to 100% activity recognition, which may depend on several factors such as the type of monitored process and the characteristics of the signals used as inputs. In this paper, we test, thought a case study on mechanized pit-drilling operations, the potential of digital signal processing techniques combined with Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) in improving the event-based classification accuracy in the time domain. Signal processing was implemented by the means of median filtering of triaxial accelerometer data (window sizes of 3, 5, and up to 21 observations collected at 1 Hz) while the ANNs were subjected to the regularization hyperparameter’s tunning. An acceleration signal processed by a median filter with a window size of 3 observations and fed into an ANN set to learn and generalize by a regularization parameter of α = 0.01 has been found to be the best strategy in improving the event-based classification accuracy (improvements of 1% to 8% in classification accuracy depending on the type of event in question). Improvement of classification accuracy by signal filtering and ANN tuning may depend largely on the type of monitored process and its outcomes in terms of event duration; therefore, other monitoring applications may need particular designs of signal processing and ANN tuning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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24 pages, 30589 KiB  
Article
SealedGRID: Secure and Interoperable Platform for Smart GRID Applications
by George Suciu, Mari-Anais Sachian, Alexandru Vulpe, Marius Vochin, Aristeidis Farao, Nikolaos Koutroumpouchos and Christos Xenakis
Sensors 2021, 21(16), 5448; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21165448 - 12 Aug 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2321
Abstract
Recent advancements in information and communication technologies (ICT) have improved the power grid, leading to what is known as the smart grid, which, as part of a critical economic and social infrastructure, is vulnerable to security threats from the use of ICT and [...] Read more.
Recent advancements in information and communication technologies (ICT) have improved the power grid, leading to what is known as the smart grid, which, as part of a critical economic and social infrastructure, is vulnerable to security threats from the use of ICT and new emerging vulnerabilities and privacy issues. Access control is a fundamental element of a security infrastructure, and security is based on the principles of less privilege, zero-trust, and segregation of duties. This work addresses how access control can be applied without disrupting the power grid’s functioning while also properly maintaining the security, scalability, and interoperability of the smart grid. The authentication in the platform presumes digital certificates using a web of trust. This paper presents the findings of the SealedGRID project, and the steps taken for implementing Attribute-based access control policies specifically customized to the smart grid. The outcome is to develop a novel, hierarchical architecture composed of different licensing entities that manages access to resources within the network infrastructure. They are based on well-drawn policy rules and the security side of these resources is placed through a context awareness module. Together with this technology, the IoT is used with Big Data (facilitating easy handling of large databases). Another goal of this paper is to present implementation and evaluations details of a secure and scalable security platform for the smart grid. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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16 pages, 4839 KiB  
Project Report
Footprint Reduction of Sensor Control Modules for Remote Portable Laboratories
by Sebastian-Alexandru Arghirescu, Maria Drăgan and Octavian Fratu
Sensors 2022, 22(4), 1483; https://doi.org/10.3390/s22041483 - 14 Feb 2022
Viewed by 1813
Abstract
Following the automation of monitoring systems for pollution levels in cities or protected nature reserves, there comes a need to increase the autonomy of robotic vectors deployed in the field. Thus, it is important to consider the weight that these robots must hold [...] Read more.
Following the automation of monitoring systems for pollution levels in cities or protected nature reserves, there comes a need to increase the autonomy of robotic vectors deployed in the field. Thus, it is important to consider the weight that these robots must hold in order to be able to carry out a comprehensive analysis of the environment. A balance must be struck in the size, weight, and complexity of the mobile laboratories used for measurement and the autonomy of robots, especially given that current technology does not allow, in most cases, a completely autonomous battery charging cycle. Thus, in this paper, we consider a microcontroller-based architecture for a mobile laboratory control system that will be used for installation on both an aerial and an aquatic mobile vector. We found that such a system can be repurposed for several sensor types and configurations, thus being able to massively reduce the space allocated when compared to embedded widespread products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Romania 2021)
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