Abstract

The design of an optical current sensor to be used in a pulsed power generator is presented. The current sensor is based on the polarization rotation by the Faraday effect. GEPOPU is a pulsed power generator, 110kA, 120ns double transit time, 1.5Ω coaxial geometry, and current rise time of 50ns. Two different optical geometries surrounding the conductor were tried, using Amici roof prism and pentaprism to go around the current once, as a way to preserve the state of polarization along the optical path by means of complementary reflections within the sensing element. We believe this to be the first time that such large and rapidly varying currents have been measured with this configuration. The values obtained for both geometries agree with the values obtained with a Rogowski coil. The traces obtained are completely noise-free and no significant time lag has been observed between the current determined from the Faraday rotation and the current measured using a Rogowski coil.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

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