Distributed Fiber Optic Strain Sensing with Embedded Small-Diameter Optical Fibers in CFRP Laminate
Although demand for composite structures rapidly increase due to the advantages in weight, there are few effective assessment techniques to enable the quality control and guarantee the durability. In particular, an invisible microscopic damage detection technology is highly required because damages such as transverse cracks, debondings, or delaminations can lead to the critical failure of the structures. Among many non-destructive evaluation (NDE) methods for composite structures, fiber optic sensors are especially attractive due to the high sensitivity, the lightweight, and the small size. In the current trend of the structural health monitoring technology, fiber Bragg gratings (FBG) sensors are frequently used as strain or temperature sensors, and Brillouin scattering sensors are also often used for a long distance distributed measurement. The Brillouin distributed sensors can measure strain over a distance of 10km while a spatial resolution was limited to 1m. Some novel sensing method is proposed to improve the spatial resolution. The pulse-prepump Brillouin optical time domain analysis (PPP-BOTDA) is one of the latest distributed sensing applications with a cm-order high spatial resolution. The PPP-BOTDA commercial product has the spatial resolution of 10cm, and can measure the strain with a precision of ±25og. This precision, however, can be achieved by using conventional single-mode optical fibers. In our research, small-diameter optical fibers with a cladding diameter of 40om were embedded in the CFRP laminate to avoid the deterioration of the CFRP mechanical properties. Thus, in order to verify the performance of PPP-BOTDA, the distributed strain measurement was conducted with the small-diameter optical fibers embedded in the CFRP laminate.
J.K. Kim, D.Z. Wo, L.M. Zhou, H.T. Huang, K.T. Lau and M. Wang
T. Mizutani et al., "Distributed Fiber Optic Strain Sensing with Embedded Small-Diameter Optical Fibers in CFRP Laminate", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 334-335, pp. 1013-1016, 2007