How Do Automatic Doors Know When to Open?

They cut down utility bills, help disabled people with access and make life a little more convenient for everyone—automatic doors do a lot for us, and it’s all managed by relatively simple technology. The “magic” of automatic doors in New York and around the world is thanks to sensors. As you’d expect from their name, sensors sense things, including sound, light, motion, pressure, and more. The stimulus that activates an automatic door depends on what kind of sensor it utilizes.


For example, some doors are triggered by pressure sensors. When the sensors pick up the pressure of a person near the entrance, they tell the doors to open. The pressure sensor may be disguised in a rubber mat near the entryway or even incorporated into the flooring.


Another popular sensor type for automatic doors is motion. A camera-equipped sensor is mounted above the entryway or built into the door frame. When something moves within the sensor’s range, the doors open right away and then close shortly after. Doors can also use different types of sensors, but motion and pressure are the most common varieties. Each has its advantages, so determining between pressure and motion is a matter of what works best for that particular property.