Innovation explained: Smart Dust

Adaptability is the central trend for the 21st century. The more individual and precisely fitting technologies function, the more possibilities it opens up for the individual areas. Smart Dust refers to small, wireless sensors that can follow various aspects. They detect not only light, but also vibrations and changes. The special feature of Smart Dust is that they are no larger than a grain of dust and can therefore report on and analyze their surroundings without major logistical problems.

The Smart Dust technology combines different areas. For example, sensors, wireless communication instruments and autonomous power supply are found in the microscopic sensors. Currently, Smart Dust is used, for example, to analyze real world phenomena without unnecessarily disturbing the process itself.

Smart Dust supports the collection and integration of data from a wide range of miniature sensors, analyzes them and provides previously unknown information on various areas. The sensors detect moisture, pressure, light and movement, among other things, and forward the data to the research teams via a wireless connection.


The advantages of Smart Dust are:

  • Improving safety, efficiency and compliance
  • Increase in productivity and quality
  • Identifying the needs of the environment without disturbing or manipulating them
  • Calibration and monitoring of machines


In spite of all the advantages, both the data protection compliant handling of the technology and the traceability of the use of Smart Dust must be communicated and taken into account. Also the implementation of a Smart Dust system is currently still a very costly matter, as there is no serial solution for certain areas yet.

Despite all the obstacles, Smart Dust will change many aspects of daily life in the future and will fundamentally shape a variety of industries

Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker is an innovation profiler, future strategist and media expert who helps companies understand the opportunities behind technologies such as artificial intelligence for the next five to ten years. He is the founder of the consulting firm "Alexander Pinker - Innovation Profiling", the innovation marketing agency "innovate! communication" and the news platform "Medialist Innovation". He is also the author of three books and a lecturer at the Technical University of Würzburg-Schweinfurt.

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