A general analytic solution for Brillouin distributed sensing in optical fibers with sub-meter spatial resolution is obtained by solving the acoustical-optical coupled wave equations by a perturbation method. The Brillouin interaction of a triad of square pump pulses with a continuous signal is described, covering a wide range of pumping schemes. The model predicts how the acoustic wave, the signal amplitude and the optical gain spectral profile depend upon the pumping scheme. Sub-meter spatial resolution is demonstrated for bright-, dark- and π-shifted interrogating pump pulses, together with disturbing echo effects, and the results compare favorably with experimental data. This analytic solution is an excellent tool not only for optimizing the pumping scheme but also for post-processing the measured data to remove resolution degrading features.
©2011 Optical Society of America
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