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Analogue to digital to smart

Smart sensors are ‘smart’ because of their ability to provide the necessary results that the underlying machine, process or system requires to function – in many cases eliminating the need to process the continuous measurement data in the PLC. This shift in concept enables decentralisation and allows innovative new system architectures for devices, machines, and manufacturing – plus testing processes and monitoring solutions.


Generate a continuous output signal but have limited signal-conditioning capabilities.


Convert measured physical values into discrete binary values, enabling digital filtering and scaling.


Smart sensors feature built-in microprocessors with signal preprocessing functions to analyse, interpret and perform domain-specific calculations, thus providing results and enabling real-time decision making.

Smart sensor elements - Accuracy, intelligence and connectivity

Smart sensors integrate the sensing element, the signal processing and a communication interface into one single unit.

They enhance precision by performing linearisation and compensation algorithms, thereby drastically reducing measurement uncertainty. HBK’s expertise spans a wide range of sensor domains – from strain, force and torque to sound and vibration. Utilising this domain-specific knowledge, our solutions feature signal-processing algorithms covering both the time and frequency domains, allowing smart sensors to perform fit-to-purpose calculations and self-health monitoring tasks.

Proven communication interfaces such as IO-Link, CAN-Bus and Industrial Ethernet protocols enable easy integration into any OT and IT-level applications.

Illustration of an infographic showing smart functions and features of smart sensors in isometric perspective

Explore our smart sensors by elements

Illustration of an infographic showing smart functions and features of smart sensors in isometric perspective

Sensing elements

  • Track proven sensors
  • Time and frequency domain
  • Quality and precision

Outstanding accurate and robust sensors. Results you can trust under any circumstances and harsh environments.



  • Extended measurement range
  • Compensation algorithms
  • EMV resistance

Accuracy saves cost: higher accuracy enables a wider measurement range, less sensors are required, and spare parts are managed more efficiently. Challenging measurements demand higher precision.

Illustration of an infographic showing smart functions and features of smart sensors in isometric perspective

Embedded analytics

  • Condition indicators
  • Sensor health monitoring
  • Field-level insights

Providing early warnings when critical operating conditions are detected increases machine uptime and reduces unnecessary servicing, improving your cost efficiency.


Signal processing

  • Additional information
  • Smart functions
  • Domain-specific-algorithms

Save calculation and data capacity in the PLC. The sensor delivers application specific results and/or the measuring values, just as required. More information from the field-level provides a good basis for understanding machines.

Illustration of an infographic showing smart functions and features of smart sensors in isometric perspective

Communication interfaces

  • Bidirectional communication
  • Standardised interfaces
  • Fieldbus independent

Leveraging open standards allows for easy integration into different system architectures. Proven communication protocols are utilised: Industrial Ethernet, IO-Link, Wireless, CAN and more.


Standardised cables and components

  • Cheap unshielded cables
  • Standardised commissioning software
  • OTS components

Standardised unshielded cables and OTS components significantly reduce costs. Utilising open protocols enables efficient, centralised sensor parametrisation and reduces commissioning time.

Discover HBK's smart sensor solutions

Our expertise covers a wide range of mechanical sensor domains; from strain, force and torque to sound and vibration – and optical fibers.

We use our domain-specific signal-processing knowledge for both the time and frequency domains, enabling our sensors to perform application-specific calculations and monitoring tasks. These are known as ‘smart functions’ and ‘condition indicators’.

HBK’s smart sensors can be strain gauge-based, use piezoelectric crystals, or incorporate MEMS. They feature proven, open-standard bidirectional communication protocols such as IO-Link, CAN-MD®, or Industrial Ethernet, ensuring easy and efficient OT and IT system integration.