Take a deep breath in...now slowly breathe out. Mmm isn't it wonderful? All that air around us, which we bring into our lungs, extract oxygen from and then breathe out carbon dioxide. CO2 is essential for life on this planet we call Earth - us and plants take turns using and emitting CO2 in an elegant symbiosis. But it's important to keep that CO2 balanced - you don't want too much around, not good for humans and not good for our planet.

The SCD-30 is an NDIR sensor, which is a 'true' CO2 sensor, that will tell you the CO2 PPM (parts-per-million) composition of ambient air. Unlike the SGP30, this sensor isn't approximating it from VOC gas concentration - it really is measuring the CO2 concentration! That means its a lot bigger and more expensive, but it is the real thing. Perfect for environmental sensing, scientific experiments, air quality and ventilation studies and more.

Data is read over I2C, so it works very nicely with just about any microcontroller or microcomputer. We've written both Arduino and Python/CircuitPython code so you can get started in a jiffy. Another nice element to this sensor is it comes with an SHT31 temperature and humidity sensor already built in. The sensor is used to compensate the NDIR CO2 sensor, but its also readable so you get full environmental data.

Nice sensor right? So we made it easy for you to get right into your next project. The sensor is hand-soldered onto a custom made PCB in the STEMMA QT form factor, making them easy to interface with. The STEMMA QT connectors on either side are compatible with the SparkFun Qwiic I2C connectors. This allows you to make solderless connections between your development board and the SCD-30 or to chain it with a wide range of other sensors and accessories using a compatible cable.

We’ve of course broken out all the pins to standard headers and added a 3.3V voltage regulator and level shifting so allow you to use it with either 3.3V or 5V systems such as the Raspberry Pi, or Metro M4 or Arduino Uno.

This guide was first published on Jan 06, 2021. It was last updated on 2021-02-21 13:57:29 -0500.

This page (Overview) was last updated on Oct 15, 2021.

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