Highly birefringent microstructured optical fiber for distributed hydrostatic pressure sensing with sub-bar resolution

in: Optics Express (2022)
Mikhailov, Sergei; Matthes, Anne; Bierlich, Jörg; Kobelke, Jens; Wondraczek, Katrin; Berghmans, Francis; Geernaert, Thomas
We demonstrate distributed optical fiber-based pressure measurements with subbar pressure resolution and 1 m spatial resolution over a ∼100 m distance using a phasesensitive optical time-domain reflectometry technique. To do so, we have designed a novel highly birefringent microstructured optical fiber that features a high pressure to temperature sensitivity ratio, a high birefringence and a mode field diameter that is comparable to that of conventional step-index single mode fibers. Our experiments with two fibers fabricated according to the design confirm the high polarimetric pressure sensitivities (−62.4 rad×MPa−1×m−1 and −40.1 rad×MPa−1×m−1) and simultaneously low polarimetric temperature sensitivities (0.09 rad×K−1×m−1 and 0.2 rad×K−1×m−1), at a wavelength of 1550 nm. The fiber features a sufficiently uniform birefringence over its entire length (2.17×10−4 } 7.65×10−6) and low propagation loss (∼3 dB/km), which allows envisaging pressure measurements along distances up to several kilometers.

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