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Title: Assessment of an extrinsic polymer-based optical fibre sensor for structural health monitoring
Authors: Kuang, K.S.C. 
Quek, S.T. 
Maalej, M. 
Keywords: Plastic optical fibres
Structural health monitoring
Issue Date: Oct-2004
Citation: Kuang, K.S.C., Quek, S.T., Maalej, M. (2004-10). Assessment of an extrinsic polymer-based optical fibre sensor for structural health monitoring. Measurement Science and Technology 15 (10) : 2133-2141. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Plastic optical fibre sensors offer remarkable ease of handling, and recent research has shown their potential as a low-cost sensor for damage detection and structural health monitoring applications. This paper presents details of a novel extrinsic polymer-based optical fibre sensor and the results of a series of mechanical tests conducted to assess its potential for structural health monitoring. The intensity-based optical fibre sensor proposed in this study relies on the modulation of light intensity as a function of a physical parameter (typically strain) as a means to monitor the response of the host structure to an applied load. Initially, the paper will reveal the design of the sensor and provide an outline of the sensor fabrication procedure followed by a brief description of its basic measurement principle. Two types of sensor design (fluid type and air type) will be evaluated in terms of their strain sensitivity, linearity and signal repeatability. Results from a series of quasi-static tensile tests conducted on an aluminium specimen with four surface-attached optical fibre sensors showed that these sensors offer excellent linear strain response over the range of the applied load. A comparison of the strain response of these sensors highlights the significant improvement in strain sensitivity of the liquid-filled-type sensor over the air-filled-type sensor. The specimens were also loaded repeatedly over a number of cycles and the findings exhibited a high degree of repeatability in all the sensors. Free vibration tests based on a cantilever beam configuration (where the optical fibre sensor was surface bonded) were also conducted to assess the dynamic response of the sensor. The results demonstrate excellent agreement with electrical strain gauge readings. An impulse-type loading test was also performed to assess the ability of the POF sensor to detect the various modes of vibration. The results of the sensor were compared and validated by a collocated piezofilm sensor highlighting the potential of the POF sensor in detecting the various eigen-frequencies of the vibration. Finally, preliminary results of a loading-unloading test of the same sensor design encased within a metal tube will be presented. The results obtained were encouraging offering the possibilities of employing the proposed device as an embedded sensor for damage detection in concrete beams. © 2004 IOP Publishing Ltd.
Source Title: Measurement Science and Technology
ISSN: 09570233
DOI: 10.1088/0957-0233/15/10/024
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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