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Sensitive Paint


Introduction to Temperature Sensitive Paints and Labels

While temperature sensitive paint is not a sensor in the sense that this site accepts, it can provide an effective solution to some temperature measurement problems. The category includes Labels, inks, paints and pigments.

Liquid Crystal Based

Those based on liquid crystals, and reversibly cover the range of approximately -30°C to 120°C, with a measurement "bandwidth" of 10°C with 1°C accuracy.

Paint Based

Other materials are used to manufacture nonreversible indicators, labels and strips. These are available for temperatures up to 1270°C. Typically these rely on material crystal lattice or phase changes at a particular temperature. They are particularly good in recording if a device has exceeded its designed temperature limit.


The application of this form of sensor is very diverse. A commonly seen application is for the measurement of aquarium temperature using self adhesive strips such as show to the left. Contrary to what may be expected in a world of electronics, the demand for these types of products is increasing due to their ease of use and very visual output.


See the following manufacturers for more information:

  • Tempil, Inc
    A leading manufacturer of chemical temperature indicators especially for the metal fabrication and medical product sterilization industries
  • Thermographic Measurement Ltd
    for thermal strips and spots
  • Lakfbriek Korthals BV
    Therm-O-Signal coatings and indicating paints
  • TIP TEMPerature Products Inc
    A US supplier of a wide range of temperature measuring products including paints and strips
  • B+H Colour Change Ltd
    A UK based company specializing in custom color change products that incorporate temperature sensitive inks and plastics
  • Hallcrest Inc
    Manufacturers of thermochromic products with an interesting product range from consumer to industrial and medical.