Abstract

Detecting explosive, flammable, or toxic industrial liquids reliably and accurately is a matter of civic responsibility that cannot be treated lightly. Tapered optical fibers (TOFs) and suspended core microstructured optical fibers (SC MOFs) were separately used as sensors of liquids without being compared to each other. We present a highly sensitive time-stable TOF sensor incorporated in the pipeline system for the in-line regime of measurement. This paper is furthermore focused on the comparison of this TOF and SC MOF of similar parameters for the detection of selected liquids. A validated method that incorporates TOF and SC MOF of small core (waist) diameter for refractometric detection is presented. The principle of detection is based on the overlap of an enhanced evanescent wave with a liquid analyte that either fills the cladding holes of the SC MOF or surrounds the waist area of the TOF. Optical power within the evanescent wave for both sensing structures and selected liquid analytes is analyzed. Measurement results concerning TOF and SC MOF are compared. Calculations to ascertain the limit of detection (LOD) for each sensor and the sensitivity (S) to refractive indices of liquid analytes in the range of 1.4269 to 1.4361 were performed at a wavelength of 1550 nm with the lowest refractive index step of 0.0007. Results affirming that S=600.96dB/RIU and LOD=0.0733RIU for the SC MOF and S=1143.2dB/RIU and LOD of 0.0026 RIU for the TOF sensor were achieved, clearly illustrating that TOF-based sensors can reach close to two times greater sensitivity and 30 times higher limit of detection. This paper extends the comparison of the fiber sensors by discussing the potential applications.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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Supplementary Material (1)

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» Visualization 1: MP4 (6863 KB)      Viscosity of GLY83.5.

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