Abstract

This work demonstrates a new technique for real-time optical sensor interrogation by exploiting a novel Vernier effect between the multiple (comb) wavelength responses of a multiplexed fiber Bragg grating array and the fixed discrete wavelengths of an all-solid-state tunable laser. Sets of output photodetector voltages serve as high-resolution optical “signatures” to determine uniquely the strain in the single fiber section. The sensor demonstrated here is compact, lightweight, and is specifically intended for remote operability in harsh (vibrational) environments. In this proof of concept, strain values over a range of nearly 500με can be easily resolved to better than 5.9με, which is the incremental limit of the mechanical test fixture used to induce strain in the experiment.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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