Sensors 2013, 13(9), 11956-11968; doi:10.3390/s130911956
Article

Characterization of Flexible Copolymer Optical Fibers for Force Sensing Applications

Received: 19 July 2013; in revised form: 20 August 2013 / Accepted: 4 September 2013 / Published: 9 September 2013
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: In this paper, different polymer optical fibres for applications in force sensing systems in textile fabrics are reported. The proposed method is based on the deflection of the light in fibre waveguides. Applying a force on the fibre changes the geometry and affects the wave guiding properties and hence induces light loss in the optical fibre. Fibres out of three different elastic and transparent copolymer materials were successfully produced and tested. Moreover, the influence of the diameter on the sensing properties was studied. The detectable force ranges from 0.05 N to 40 N (applied on 3 cm of fibre length), which can be regulated with the material and the diameter of the fibre. The detected signal loss varied from 0.6% to 78.3%. The fibres have attenuation parameters between 0.16–0.25 dB/cm at 652 nm. We show that the cross-sensitivies to temperature, strain and bends are low. Moreover, the high yield strength (0.0039–0.0054 GPa) and flexibility make these fibres very attractive candidates for integration into textiles to form wearable sensors, medical textiles or even computing systems.
Keywords: force sensor; optical fibres; sensitive force sensor; flexible light guide
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MDPI and ACS Style

Krehel, M.; Rossi, R.M.; Bona, G.-L.; Scherer, L.J. Characterization of Flexible Copolymer Optical Fibers for Force Sensing Applications. Sensors 2013, 13, 11956-11968.

AMA Style

Krehel M, Rossi RM, Bona G-L, Scherer LJ. Characterization of Flexible Copolymer Optical Fibers for Force Sensing Applications. Sensors. 2013; 13(9):11956-11968.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Krehel, Marek; Rossi, René M.; Bona, Gian-Luca; Scherer, Lukas J. 2013. "Characterization of Flexible Copolymer Optical Fibers for Force Sensing Applications." Sensors 13, no. 9: 11956-11968.

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