Should it be "skin core temperature sensor" or "core temperature skin sensor"?

  • Google can't find results for either (exact) phrase. Aug 2, 2017 at 17:00
  • I know, this is a new device :P
    – Pedro
    Aug 2, 2017 at 17:01
  • what about 'external core temperature sensor'? Aug 2, 2017 at 17:03
  • that is more vague. that could be for example an infrared camera that estimates core temperature.
    – Pedro
    Aug 2, 2017 at 17:05
  • 2
    You're assuming that there's always going to be a satisfactory way of stacking premodifiers to give unambiguous new compounds. Attributives in particular are used in a bewildering number of semantic roles ('skin' can obviously mean 'made from skin'). Is 'topical core temperature sensor' any better? Or is 'topical' restricted to describing medications – lotions, sprays etc – applied to the surface of the skin? Aug 2, 2017 at 19:05

2 Answers 2


How about use hyphens?

E.g. skin-based core-temperature sensor

Or a SBCTS to those in the field.

  • 1
    That almost kinda sorta works.
    – Hot Licks
    Aug 3, 2017 at 0:15

How about switching words, as in adhesive core temperature sensor?

  • Yeah, I really want to know the core temperature of that adhesive!
    – Hot Licks
    Aug 2, 2017 at 20:25

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