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Proceedings Paper

Self-heated fiber Bragg grating sensors for cryogenic environments
Author(s): Tong Chen; Philip R. Swinehart; Mokhtar S. Maklad; Michael P. Buric; Kevin P. Chen
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Paper Abstract

Cryogenic fuels are often considered as major energy alternatives to coal and petroleum based fuels. Safe and reliable sensor networks are required for on-demand, real-time fuel management in cryogenic environments. In this paper, a new sensor design is described that enhances the low-temperature performance of fiber sensors. FBGs inscribed in high attenuation fiber (HAF) are used to absorb in-fiber power light to raise the local sensor temperature in the cryogenic environment. When in-fiber power light is turned off, FBG sensors can serve as passive sensors to gauge temperature and stress in the cryogenic system. When the in-fiber power light is turned on, the heated sensors can be used to rapidly gauge fuel level and fuel leaks. In one example, a hydrogen gas sensor is demonstrated with a palladium-coated fiber Bragg grating (FBG). The low-temperature performance of the sensor was improved by heating the gratings as much as 200 K above the ambient temperature, and hydrogen concentration well below the 4% explosion limit was measured at 123K. In a second example, an array of four aluminum coated fiber Bragg gratings was used to measure liquid level in a cryogenic environment.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 April 2010
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 7677, Fiber Optic Sensors and Applications VII, 76770F (23 April 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.851526
Show Author Affiliations
Tong Chen, Univ. of Pittsburgh (United States)
Philip R. Swinehart, Lake Shore Cryotronics, Inc. (United States)
Mokhtar S. Maklad, Lake Shore Cryotronics, Inc. (United States)
Michael P. Buric, Univ. of Pittsburgh (United States)
Kevin P. Chen, Univ. of Pittsburgh (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7677:
Fiber Optic Sensors and Applications VII
Alexis Mendez; Henry H. Du; Anbo Wang; Eric Udd; Stephen J. Mihailov, Editor(s)

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