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Proceedings Paper

Intrinsic polymer optical fiber sensors for high-strain applications
Author(s): Sharon Kiesel; Patrick Van Vickle; Kara J. Peters; Tasnim Hassan; Mervyn Kowalsky
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Paper Abstract

This paper presents intrinsic polymer fiber (POF) sensors for high-strain applications such as health monitoring of civil infrastructure systems subjected to earthquake loading or structures with large shape changes such as morphing aircraft. POFs provide a potential maximum strain range of 6-12%, are more flexible that silica optical fibers, and are more durable in harsh chemical or environmental conditions. Recent advances in the fabrication of singlemode POFs have made it possible to extend POFs to interferometric sensor capabilities. Furthermore, the interferometric nature of intrinsic sensors permits high accuracy for such measurements. However, several challenges, addressed in this paper, make the application of the POF interferometer more difficult than its silica counterpart. These include the finite deformation of the POF cross-section at high strain values, nonlinear strain optic effects in the polymer, and the attenuation with strain of the POF. In order to predict the response of the sensor a second-order (in strain) photoelastic effect is derived and combined with the second-order solution of the deformation of the optical fiber when loaded. It is determined that for the small deformation region four constants are required (two mechanical and two photoelastic properties) and for the large deformation region six additional constants are required (two mechanical and four photoelastic properties). This paper also presents initial measurements of the mechanical response of the sensor and comparison to previously reported POFs.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 March 2006
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 6167, Smart Structures and Materials 2006: Smart Sensor Monitoring Systems and Applications, 616713 (30 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.657436
Show Author Affiliations
Sharon Kiesel, North Carolina State Univ. (United States)
Patrick Van Vickle, North Carolina State Univ. (United States)
Kara J. Peters, North Carolina State Univ. (United States)
Tasnim Hassan, North Carolina State Univ. (United States)
Mervyn Kowalsky, North Carolina State Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6167:
Smart Structures and Materials 2006: Smart Sensor Monitoring Systems and Applications
Daniele Inaudi; Wolfgang Ecke; Brian Culshaw; Kara J. Peters; Eric Udd, Editor(s)

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