A novel polarization maintaining fiber (PMF) loop is proposed and used for an interferometric fiber optic gyroscope (FOG). By splicing a conventional PMF loop with two pigtailed polarization beam splitters, polarized light can be guided to propagate along the slow and fast axes of the PMF in sequence to double its effective optical length in the loop. In particular, the resultant optical length in the combined loop is partially self-compensated for some external disturbances, such as transverse strain. Primary experiments on the FOG using the proposed loop demonstrate that the average static bias deviation between -40 and +60 oC is less than 0.050 deg./h, and the average bias variation under conventional random vibration test is less than 0.10 deg./h.
© 2011 Chinese Optics Letters
(060.2340) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber optics components
(060.2800) Fiber optics and optical communications : Gyroscopes
(230.5440) Optical devices : Polarization-selective devices
(350.4600) Other areas of optics : Optical engineering
Changsheng Li, Chunxi Zhang, Ningfang Song, and Hongjie Xu, "Polarization-maintaining fiber loop with double optical length and its application to fiber optic gyroscope," Chin. Opt. Lett. 9, 020604- (2011)