Surface Temperature Sensors / Wintersense SDI-12
Wintersense SDI-12 Non-Invasive Surface Temperature Sensor
Forecast Winter Treatments for Road Surfaces
Prevent traffic accidents and loss of life
weather applications supported water applications supported energy applications supported gas flux and turbulence applications supported infrastructure applications supported soil applications supported


The Wintersense SDI-12 is a remote road surface temperature sensor designed for use with your Road Weather Information Systems (RWIS). It is an easy-to-deploy, non-invasive, compact, and lightweight sensor that you can mount on existing roadside structures such as streetlight columns or RWIS towers. The Wintersense SDI-12 has a cabled connection for power and communications with an RWIS station or data logger for data storage and forwarding. 

With accurate, real-time road surface temperature data, you can forecast your winter road treatments, preventing traffic accidents and potential loss of life.

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Benefits and Features

  • Accurate
  • Non-invasive
  • Easy to install
  • Simple to maintain
  • Compatible with most data loggers and RWIS
  • Remote firmware updates


Detailed Description

The Wintersense SDI-12 is equipped with a thermopile sensor that detects the presence of thermal radiation emitted from the target surface. The sensor also has an integrated optical filter that cuts off the visible and near-infrared radiation flux so that you get optimum ambient and sunlight immunity. These features, combined with an eight-second signal-averaging algorithm, provide you with best-of-class data for these measurement parameters:

  • Road surface temperature
  • Air temperature
  • Relative humidity
  • Dewpoint
  • Installation angle
  • Sensor temperature


Road-Surface Temperature

Measurement Range -40 to +70°C (-40 to +158°F)
Accuracy at -40 to +60°C
  • ±0.5°C
  • Note: Accuracy is temperature dependent. The quoted accuracy is against a blackbody source within the ambient temperature range of -20 to +50°C and object temperature range of -40 to +60°C.
Resolution ±0.01°C
Field of View (FOV)
  • 10° (at 50% normalized signal)
  • Note: Use our field-of-view tool to make your calculations and install your Wintersense SDI-12 appropriately.
Distance to Target 2 to 15 m (6.6 to 49.2 ft)

Dew Point Temperature (Calculated)

Measurement Range -40 to +70°C (-40 to +158°F)
  • ±1°C
  • Note: The calculated dew point temperature is found from Tetens' equation solved for dew point with coefficients optimized for the temperature range -35 to +50°C.
Resolution 0.1°C

Air Temperature

Measurement Range -40 to +70°C (-40 to +158°F)
  • ±0.4°C
  • Note: Inaccuracy can be higher under moderate-to-high solar radiation.
Resolution ±0.01°C

Relative Humidity

Measurement Range 0 to 100%
Accuracy < ±3%
Resolution ±0.1%

General Specifications

Operating Temperature Range -40 to +70°C (-40 to +158°F)
Operating Humidity Range 0 to 100%
Internal Enclosure Sealing IP65 (minimum)
Typical Power Consumption @ 12 Vdc
  • < 0.1 mA (idle)
  • < 14 mA (active)
Supply Voltage Range 5 to 18 Vdc
Dimensions 350 x 200 x 100 mm (13.8 x 7.9 x 4.0 in.)
Weight 1.4 kg (3 lb)
Digital Output SDI-12
Default SDI-12 Address 0
Response Time (to M!) 8 s to read all sensor outputs using SDI-12 commands
Sensor Warm-up Time If power is switched, allow 3 s for warm-up before taking a measurement.


Please note: The following shows notable compatibility information. It is not a comprehensive list of all compatible products.

Data Loggers

Compatible Note
CR3000 (retired)
CR800 (retired)
CR850 (retired)

Additional Compatibility Information

The Wintersense SDI-12 is SDI-12 v1.4 compliant and is compatible with all SDI-12 compliant recorders and all Campbell Scientific RWIS stations. Please check with the manufacturer of any non-Campbell Scientific RWIS station to determine compatibility with the SDI-12 industry standard. 


Wintersense SDI-12 Program Example v.1 (1 KB) 07-12-2022

An example program to read and store Wintersense SDI-12 data every five minutes. Program uses 0 for the SDI-12 address. This program has a CRB extension making it compatible with GRANITE, CR6, CR1000X, CR350, and CR300 data loggers.