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Proceedings Paper

Position Sensing By Coupling And Detecting Light In Lossy Waveguides
Author(s): Michel F. Sultan; Michael J. O 'Rourke
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Paper Abstract

A new class of contactless optical position sensors is presented. These sensors are low cost, easy to fabricate and have wide applications. The sensing mechanism consists of injecting a light beam into a lossy waveguide at the position to be sensed. The coupled light divides equally into two guided waves that attenuate as they propagate in opposing directions towards the extremities of the guide. The ratio of the detected signals is a monotonic function of the position to be sensed. Two prototype sensors were tested. The first sensor consists of a fluorescent strip where external light is actively captured by absorption and reemission at the fluorescence wavelength. The second sensor is a surface-roughened polymer waveguide where light is passively coupled by scattering at the surface irregularities. Both sensors exhibited linear responses over their respective ranges of 10 and 12 centimeters.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 February 1990
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 1169, Fiber Optic and Laser Sensors VII, (13 February 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.963067
Show Author Affiliations
Michel F. Sultan, General Motors Research Laboratories (United States)
Michael J. O 'Rourke, General Motors Research Laboratories (United States)

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

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