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Proceedings Paper

Fiber optic microsensor for refractive index and salinity based on SPR
Author(s): Bjoern Grunwald; Gerhard A. Holst
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Paper Abstract

A new refractive index microsensor based on surface plasmon resonance (SPR) for fine scale measurements in aquatic environments is presented. The local light conditions in marine sediments determine the activity of photosynthetic organisms. The light field can be investigated by scalar irradiance microprobes at a spatial resolution better than 100 micrometer but the refraction index still has to be assumed constant or measured by techniques with lower spatial resolution. It is well known from other microsensor measurements that the microenvironment strongly determines the metabolism of the organisms. Therefore we developed the new sensor to access the fine scale distribution of refraction index. A second parameter of interest is the salinity which can be assumed not to be constant in some biofilms. As the salinity is usually measured with a refractometer, we checked if we could measure salinity independent of the ambient optical conditions in the sediment with the new microsensor. The microsensor is formed by a multimode silica fiber where the plastic jacket and fiber cladding has been removed. The tip is then tapered and a gold layer is deposited. Due to the tapered geometry the diameter is decreased to achieve a higher spatial resolution for profiling applications. SPR is excited at the fiber tip by coupling polychromatic light into the fiber. The reflected light is measured with a spectrometer. A refractive index change of the fiber tips surrounding area causes a wavelength shift of the spectral intensity distribution. The effects of different tip geometries have been characterized and results are presented. An appropriate measuring system is proposed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 December 1999
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 3860, Fiber Optic Sensor Technology and Applications, (9 December 1999); doi: 10.1117/12.372994
Show Author Affiliations
Bjoern Grunwald, Max-Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology (Germany)
Gerhard A. Holst, Max-Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3860:
Fiber Optic Sensor Technology and Applications
Michael A. Marcus; Brian Culshaw, Editor(s)

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