We demonstrate a compact power-referenced fiber-optic accelerometer using a weakly tilted fiber Bragg grating (TFBG) combined with an abrupt biconical taper. The electric-arc-heating induced taper is located a short distance upstream from the TFBG and functions as a bridge to recouple the TFBG-excited lower-order cladding modes back into the fiber core. This recoupling is extremely sensitive to microbending. We avoid complex wavelength interrogation by simply monitoring power change in reflection, which we show to be proportional to acceleration. In addition, the Bragg resonance is virtually unaffected by fiber bending and can be used as a power reference to cancel out any light source fluctuations. The proposed sensing configuration provides a constant linear response (nonlinearity < 1%) over a vibration frequency range from DC to 250 Hz. The upper vibration frequency limit of measurement is determined by mechanical resonance, and can be tuned by varying the sensor length. The tip-reflection sensing feature enables the sensor head to be made small enough (20∼100 mm in length and 2 mm in diameter) for embedded detection. The polymer-tube-package makes the sensor sufficiently stiff for in-field acceleration measurement.

Additional Metadata
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.17.020651
Journal Optics Express
Guo, T, Shao, L.-Y, Tam, H.-Y. (Hwa-Yaw), Albert, J, & Krug, P. (2009). Tilted fiber grating accelerometer incorporating an abrupt biconical taper for cladding to core recoupling. Optics Express, 17(23), 20651–20660. doi:10.1364/OE.17.020651