Optical and optoelectronic sensors convert optical information into electrically analyzable signals, whereby visible light, infrared radiation and ultraviolet light are primarily used for this purpose.
To a certain extent, the quantum mechanical effects of light (also generally referred to as the photoelectric effect) form the basis for optical sensors.
Industrial applications for optical sensors are to be found in automation in particular. Apart from simple detection tasks, in such applications the sensors are also used for e.g. position measurements, safeguarding tasks (i.e. personal protection) as well as for distance measurements.