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Proceedings Paper

Comparison of three types of fibre optic hydrogen sensors within the frame of CryoFOS project
Author(s): J. Alfredo Guemes; J. M. Pintado; M. Frovel; E. Olmo; A. Obst
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Paper Abstract

Three different sensors for hydrogen detection have been built and tested within a research project for the European Space Agency. One type is a FBG coated with a palladium layer, detecting the hydrogen by metal hindrance, the strains transmitted to the grating by shear. It works only as a detector and can not quantify the H2 percentage in a gas mixture. A main drawback, common with all palladium based sensors, was a strong temperature dependence, which makes its response time too large at low temperatures. The other two types were intensity based sensors; one of them was a micromirror, with a palladium thin layer at the cleaved end, detecting changes in the backreflected light. The other one as a tapered fibre coated also with palladium; hydrogen will change the refractive index of the palladium, and consequently the amount of losses in the evanescent wave. A trade-off analysis of sensor performances was done, comparing reproducibility, repetitiveness, robustness, multiplexability, response time and cost. FBG sensor was found to be the most reliable sensor among the optical fibres sensors considered, and the preferred one for space applications.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 May 2005
PDF: 4 pages
Proc. SPIE 5855, 17th International Conference on Optical Fibre Sensors, (23 May 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.623731
Show Author Affiliations
J. Alfredo Guemes, Univ. Politecnica de Madrid (Spain)
J. M. Pintado, Instituto Nacional de Tecnica Aeroespacial (Spain)
M. Frovel, Instituto Nacional de Tecnica Aeroespacial (Spain)
E. Olmo, EADS CASA Espacio SL (Spain)
A. Obst, European Space Agency/ESTEC (Netherlands)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5855:
17th International Conference on Optical Fibre Sensors
Marc Voet; Reinhardt Willsch; Wolfgang Ecke; Julian Jones; Brian Culshaw, Editor(s)

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