The modeling, design, simulation, fabrication, calibration, and testing of a three-element, fiber Bragg grating strain sensor array with the coherent optical frequency domain reflectometry (C-OFDR) interrogation technique are demonstrated. The fiber Bragg grating array (FBGA) is initially simulated using in-house software that incorporates transfer matrices. Compared to the previous techniques used, the transfer matrix method allows a systemwide approach to modeling the FBGA–C-OFDR system. Once designed and simulated, the FBGA system design is then imprinted into the core of a boron–germanium codoped photosensitive fiber using the phase mask technique. A fiber optic Fabry–Perot interferometric (FPI) strain gauge calibrator is then used to determine the strain gauge factor of a single fiber Bragg grating (FBG), and the results are used on the FBGA. The FPI strain gauge calibrator offers nondestructive testing of the FBG. To test the system, the FBGA is then attached to a cantilever beam and interrogated using an incremental tunable laser. Electric strain gauges (ESGs) are then used to independently verify the strain measurements with the FBGA at various displacements of the cantilever beam. The results show that the peak strain error is 18% with respect to ESG results. In addition, good agreement is shown between the simulation and the experimental results.
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