Motion Sensor And Occupancy Sensor, Are They The Same Thing?

We often hear about motion sensors and occupancy sensors. People usually refer to the same thing, but are they?

The motion sensor is a sensor that takes actions when detecting motion. A motion sensor can be used to turn on/off lights, trigger security alarms, to send signals to other devices.

An occupancy sensor is a sensor that takes action when detecting given space is currently occupied or not. If the given space is full or occupied, the occupancy sensor will take actions such as turning on the lights and turning on the fan to save energy. If the space is empty, then the occupancy sensor will turn off the light or fan switch.

Typically, an occupancy sensor is one kind of motion sensor, and they detect occupancy/vacancy by detecting whether there is motion. Occupancy sensors are widely used as sensor switches for automation. But motion sensors are not limited to controlling lights or fans, and they are capable of many other motion detection applications.

In some areas/industries, motion sensors and occupancy sensors are typically the same things. i.e., in the lighting control industry.

But in other areas, motion sensors are just motion sensors. If you want to buy an occupancy sensor for your light switch or fan switch, just look for an occupancy or occupancy/vacancy sensor light switch directly.

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