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Proceedings Paper

Fiber optic sensors for traffic monitoring applications
Author(s): Pekka Suopajaervi; Riku Pennala; Mikko Heikkinen; Pentti Karioja; Veijo Lyori; Risto A. Myllylae; Seppo M. Nissilae; Harri K. Kopola; Heikki Suni
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Paper Abstract

A novel fiber optic sensors for traffic monitoring applications are presented. They are useful for monitoring the traffic entering and leaving guarded areas, counting traffic on public roads as well as in determining lane occupancy at traffic lights. When installing sensor arrays, the sensors may also be used to provide additional information: measure the speed, wheel base of a vehicle and also to determine the number of axles and vehicle type. The sensors are based on optical fiber or cable, installed inside the asphalt layer of the road, to measure compression or vibrations near the road surface. Two sensor principles were used. One based on the microbending effect and another that utilizes the speckle phenomenon. In both cases the whole length of the fiber acts as a sensor. The microbending sensor requires a special fiber and special set-up, whereas in the speckle sensor a standard cable may be used. Both sensor types were tested in field applications where the harsh environment, especially the heat, sets great demands on installation. In these experiments, speed and vehicle type measurements were carried out with good results. In the paper, we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of both sensor types and present some field test results. We will also show the benefits of these particular fiber optic sensors over traditional sensors.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 June 1998
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 3325, Smart Structures and Materials 1998: Smart Systems for Bridges, Structures, and Highways, (17 June 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.310611
Show Author Affiliations
Pekka Suopajaervi, VTT Electronics (Finland)
Riku Pennala, Univ. of Oulu (Finland)
Mikko Heikkinen, Univ. of Oulu (Finland)
Pentti Karioja, VTT Electronics (Finland)
Veijo Lyori, Univ. of Oulu (Finland)
Risto A. Myllylae, Univ. of Oulu (Finland)
Seppo M. Nissilae, Univ. of Oulu (Finland)
Harri K. Kopola, VTT Electronics (Finland)
Heikki Suni, Finnish National Road Administration (Finland)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3325:
Smart Structures and Materials 1998: Smart Systems for Bridges, Structures, and Highways
S.-C. Liu, Editor(s)

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