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I wish I knew what a proximity sensor is!

Ever wondered how you can lock and unlock your car from several feet away by using your key fob? Proximity sensor reporting for duty! These sensors can detect a variety of nearby objects without coming in contact with them. Your key fob emits a beam of electromagnetic radiation. When that beam finds your car, the sensor sends a signal to the locking system to unlock or lock your car doors.

You’ll also find proximity sensors in some restrooms, those with the automatic sink taps. Just stick your hands under the tap and tada! Water to wash your hands. This sensor emits magnetic lines of force under the tap. If an object breaks those lines, then it triggers the water. Removing the blocking object allows the lines to resume and shuts off the water.

Most smartphones have these sensors too. For instance, during a phone call, a sensor will make sure your ear doesn’t accidentally buy a dishwasher through the 1-Click option on your Amazon account. Not that that would happen, but wouldn’t it be annoying if it did?

Speaking of annoying, back to your car for one more proximity sensor – the parking detector on your bumper. “Beep beep beep” means “You’re getting pretty close.” And “beepbeepbeep” means “You’d better stop really really soon!” And now I’ll stop because now you know what a proximity sensor is!

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