Novel Acousto-Ultrasonic Piezoelectric-Fiber Bragg Grating (P-FBG) Sensor


Reference #:  00937

The University of South Carolina is offering licensing opportunities for a Novel Acousto-Ultrasonic Piezoelectric-Fiber Bragg Grating (P-FBG) Sensor


Invention Description:

The subject invention is a new sensor combining an encapsulated fiber optic sensor (e.g. Bragg grating) with a piezoelectric small ring (e.g. annular PWAS). The system offers a novel and unprecedented solution for acousto-ultrasonic measurements that is beyond state of the art. Using this new concept, it is possible to measure and monitor ultrasonic waves, acoustic events as well as loads, pressure, temperature, etc.


Advantages and Benefits:

•       The benefits of piezo-optical system are:

•       The improved actuator-sensor decoupling (i.e minimum interference between the two sensors output signal) because they use different mechanisms for signal transmission: the piezoelectric sensor (or actuator) use electrical channels while the FBG sensor use optical channels

•       The multiplexing of large amounts of P-FBGS on single optical fiber

•       The use for a multitude of measurements

•       The FGB has a unidirectional sensitivity, while the PWAS has a multidirectional sensitivity

•       The derivation of the synergies from the fundamnetal different principles, i.e. piezoelectric and optical principles

•       The electrically excitation to PFBG (from the piezoelectric ring sensor): Get direct unadulterated reading of the excitation strain to serve as excitation reference.

•       The capture of two strains simultaneously: (i) Circumferential averaged strain (piezoelectric ring sensor); (ii) Directional strain (FBG sensor)

•       The use of the transducers (from the piezoelectric ring sensor) can actively interrogate the structure using a variety of guided-wave methods such as pitch-catch, pulse-echo, sparse array, phased arrays and electromechanical (EM) impedance technique.


Potential Applications:

This invention could be used for several applications:

1.       Civil Engineering (bridges, building, transportation system, etc.)

2.       Energy infrastructure (wind turbine, nuclear system, solar cells, oil and gas industry, offshore, etc.

3.       National security (surveillance for anti-submarine warfare passive sonar, anti-terrorism/force protection systems, etc.)

4.       Environmental and pollution control (sensing gases such as methane, ammonia, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and for monitoring seawater and drinking water)

5.       Biomedical applications (in-vivo sensors for PH, O2 and CO2 levels in blood, glucose and cholesterol control)

6.       Chemical industry

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Technology Commercialization
University of South Carolina
Victor Giurgiutiu
Matthieu Gresil
Roman Catalin
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