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Proceedings Paper

A Photon Counting Optical Time-Domain Reflectometer For Distributed Sensing Applications
Author(s): B. K. Garside; R. E. Park
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Paper Abstract

There are an increasing number of applications in short haul optical fiber communications and multi-sensor networks for which a very high spatial resolution (on a few cm scale) Optical Tine-Domain Ref lectometer (OTDR) is needed. For many applications, it is sufficient to be able to detect back-reflections from specific elements, such as connectors and optical switches, within the fiber link. However, in certain cases, such as for distributed sensing using optical fibers embedded within various mechanical structures, it is important to be able to measure the Rayleigh backscattering from the fiber. In order to achieve centimeter scale spatial resolution along a fiber, it is necessary to employ optical sources and detectors with response on a 100ps timescale. In this paper, we describe the results of an investigation into the limiting capability in terms of spatial resolution and return signal strength which can be achieved using a photon counting method of detecting the backscatter signals from the fiber system under test. The bulk of the paper is concerned with system operation at a wavelength of 0.85 μm; some preliminary results obtained at 1.3 μm are also described.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 February 1990
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 1169, Fiber Optic and Laser Sensors VII, (13 February 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.963021
Show Author Affiliations
B. K. Garside, Opto-Electronics Inc. (Canada)
R. E. Park, Opto-Electronics Inc. (Canada)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1169:
Fiber Optic and Laser Sensors VII
Ramon P. DePaula; Eric Udd, Editor(s)

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