Æther: multi-purpose smart sensor

Data is the new gold, and the demand for data has never been higher. So is data about people and their environment. But to make a specific sensor for every demand is costly. There needs to be one sensor that can accurately measure all these situations.


Within the Æther project, a sensor is being developed that is multi-applicable in different situations to measure both humans and their living environment. The sensor can measure all kinds of factors simultaneously, such as: temperature, light, movement, humidity, rotation, orientation and air pressure. The collected results are then made visible in an app developed for this purpose. The sensor should be available for free to anyone who would like to make use of it.

Due to its multi-purpose use, the sensor should not be too big, robust and able to withstand weather, considerable cold and heat. It must be easily transformable into a wearable. It must also be able to be hung or put on without wiring and data must be transmitted securely via WLAN.


  • Housing developers use the sensor to make the home 'smart'.
  • Physiotherapists use the sensor to measure their patient's movement, but can also deploy it to measure whether the indoor climate of a room is good or, on the contrary, worsens the symptoms of someone with COPD, for example.
  • Nature managers can use the Aether to accurately map the flow of visitors to the nature reserve. For example, to redirect visitors to spare parts of the nature reserve (temporarily).


01 January 2020 - 01 January 2026


The sensor is developed together with intended users such as physiotherapists, researchers, nature managers and housing developers. Based on their input, the multi-purpose sensor will be developed and programmed to meet user requirements.

Impact on education

The sensor was developed on behalf of the research group by Mechanical Engineering students participating in an honours programme within the research group. In two tracks, the students are developing both the sensor and the user app together with lecturer-researchers. The sensor remains in further development at Denver House where students will test its usability for multiple applications.

HU researchers involved in the research

Related research groups

Collaboration with knowledge partners

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