OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 51, Iss. 9 — Mar. 20, 2012
  • pp: 1188–1197

Superstructured fiber-optic contact force sensor with minimal cosensitivity to temperature and axial strain

Christopher R. Dennison and Peter M. Wild  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 51, Issue 9, pp. 1188-1197 (2012)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (979 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



In this work a new superstructured, in-fiber Bragg grating (FBG)-based, contact force sensor is presented that is based on birefringent D-shape optical fiber. The sensor superstructure comprises a polyimide sheath, a stress-concentrating feature, and an alignment feature that repeatably orients the sensor with respect to contact forces. A combination of plane elasticity and strain-optic models is used to predict sensor performance in terms of sensitivity to contact force and axial strain. Model predictions are validated through experimental calibration and indicate contact force, axial strain, and temperature sensitivities of 169.6pm/(N/mm), 0.01pm/με, and 1.12pm/°C in terms of spectral separation. The sensor addresses challenges associated with contact force sensors that are based on FBGs in birefringent fiber, FBGs in conventional optical fiber, and tilted FBGs. Relative to other birefringent fiber sensors, the sensor has contact force sensitivity comparable to the highest sensitivity of commercially available birefringent fibers and, unlike other birefringent fiber sensors, is self-aligning with respect to contact forces. Unlike sensors based on Bragg gratings in conventional fiber and tilted Bragg gratings, the sensor has minimal cosensitivity to both axial strain and changes in temperature.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(060.0060) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber optics and optical communications
(060.2370) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber optics sensors
(060.3735) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber Bragg gratings

ToC Category:
Fiber Optics and Optical Communications

Original Manuscript: September 7, 2011
Revised Manuscript: December 7, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: December 9, 2011
Published: March 12, 2012

Christopher R. Dennison and Peter M. Wild, "Superstructured fiber-optic contact force sensor with minimal cosensitivity to temperature and axial strain," Appl. Opt. 51, 1188-1197 (2012)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. R. M. Measures, Structural Health Monitoring with Fiber Optic Technology (Academic, 2001).
  2. E. Chehura, C.-C. Ye, S. E. Staines, S. W. James, and R. P. Tatam, “Characterization of the response of fibre Bragg gratings fabricated in stress and geometrically induced high birefringence fibres to temperature and transverse load,” Smart Mater. Struct. 13, 888–895 (2004). [CrossRef]
  3. K. Okamoto, T. Hosaka, and T. Edahiro, “Stress analysis of optical fibers by a finite element method,” IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 17, 2123–2129 (1981). [CrossRef]
  4. A. J. Barlow and D. Payne, “The stress-optic effect in optical fibers,” IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 19, 834–839 (1983). [CrossRef]
  5. E. Udd, D. Nelson, and C. Lawrence, “Three axis strain and temperature fiber optic grating sensor,” Proc. SPIE 2718, 104–109 (1996). [CrossRef]
  6. L. Y. Shao, Q. Jiang, and J. Albert, “Fiber optic pressure sensing with conforming elastomers,” Appl. Opt. 49, 6784–6788 (2010). [CrossRef]
  7. P. Wierzba and B. B. Kosmowski, “Application of polarisation-maintaining side-hole fibres to direct force measurement,” Opto-Electron. Rev. 11, 305–311 (2003).
  8. C. Sonnenfeld, S. Sulejmani, T. Geernaert, S. Eve, N. Lammens, G. Luyckx, E. Voet, J. Degrieck, W. Urbanczyk, P. Mergo, M. Becker, H. Bartelt, F. Berghmans, and H. Thienpont, “Microstructured optical fiber sensors embedded in a laminate composite for smart material applications,” Sensors 11, 2566–2579 (2011). [CrossRef]
  9. V. Mishra, N. Singh, U. Tiwari, and P. Kapur, “Fiber grating sensors in medicine: current and emerging applications,” Sensors Actuators A 167, 279–290 (2011). [CrossRef]
  10. L. Mohanty, S. C. Tjin, D. T. T. Lie, S. E. C. Panganiban, and P. K. H. Chow, “Fiber grating sensor for pressure mapping during total knee arthroplasty,” Sensors Actuators A 135, 323–328 (2007). [CrossRef]
  11. C. R. Dennison, P. M. Wild, D. R. Wilson, and M. K. Gilbart, “An in-fiber Bragg grating sensor for contact force and stress measurements in articular joints,” Meas. Sci. Technol. 21, 115803 (2010). [CrossRef]
  12. K. O. Hill, Y. Fujii, D. C. Johnson, and B. S. Kawasaki, “Photosensitivity in optical fiber waveguides: application to reflection filter fabrication,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 32, 647–649 (1978). [CrossRef]
  13. J. Noda, K. Okamoto, and Y. Sasaki, “Polarization maintaining fibers and their applications,” J. Lightwave Technol. 4, 1071–1089 (1986). [CrossRef]
  14. I. Abe, O. Frazao, M. W. Schiller, R. N. Noqueira, H. J. Kalinowski, and J. L. Pinto, “Bragg gratings in normal and reduced diameter high birefringence fibre optics,” Meas. Sci. Technol. 17, 1477–1484 (2006). [CrossRef]
  15. A. Mendez and T. F. Morse, Specialty Optical Fibers Handbook (Academic, 2007).
  16. A. Kumar, V. Gupta, and K. Thyagarajan, “Geometrical birefringence of polished and D-shape fibers,” Opt. Commun. 61, 195–198 (1987). [CrossRef]
  17. W. Urbanczyk, T. Martynkien, and W. J. Bock, “Dispersion effects in elliptical-core highly birefringent fibers,” Appl. Opt. 40, 1911–1920 (2001). [CrossRef]
  18. K. L. Johnson, Contact Mechanics (Cambridge University, 1987).
  19. M. G. Xu, H. Geiger, and J. P. Dakin, “Fibre grating pressure sensor with enhanced sensitivity using a glass-bubble housing,” Electron. Lett. 32, 128–129 (1996). [CrossRef]
  20. M. G. Xu, L. Reekie, Y. T. Chow, and J. P. Dakin, “Optical in-fibre grating high pressure sensor,” Electron. Lett. 29, 398–399 (1993). [CrossRef]
  21. T. Yamate, R. T. Ramos, R. J. Schroeder, and E. Udd, “Thermally insensitive pressure measurements up to 300 °C using fiber Bragg gratings written onto side hole single mode fiber,” Proc. SPIE 4185, 628–632 (2000).
  22. R. L. Norton, Machine Design: An Integrated Approach(Prentice-Hall, 2000).
  23. S. Huang, M. LeBlanc, M. M. Ohn, and R. M. Measures, “Bragg intragrating structural sensing,” Appl. Opt. 34, 5003–5009 (1995). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited