Fiber Optic Shape Sensors
Sense changes in shape in real time without affecting performance and without the need for structural modifications
NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center has developed a shape-sensing technology that offers high resolution (0.5-inch) at a 60-Hz refresh rate. The technology is contained in a small, lightweight package the size of shoebox that uses fiber Bragg grating (FBG) sensors and ultra-efficient, real-time algorithms. It is capable of interrogating and processing information for 1,000 sensors at a rate of 60 times per second. This innovation is available for commercial licensing and has applications in many areas including automotive, aeronautics, wind energy, medicine and structural health monitoring.
- Multiple engineering measurements (e.g., strain, temperature, structural shape)
- Non-intrusive design that does not affect structure’s performance
- Off-the-shelf-components assembly and customizable software code from NASA
- Robust design resistant to any (or all) electromagnetic/radio frequency interference and radiation
Why It’s Better
With significant advantages over current sensing technologies, this technology provides the capability to acquire a large number of accurate surface strain, temperature and displacement measurements in real time for large structures that are undergoing a wide range of displacements during operation. Data acquisition is possible with a minimal weight penalty. Furthermore, this is the only technology available that can provide out-of-plane structural deflection, local strain and temperature measurements in real time.