Miniature read-out sensor resolves wavelength to 50 femtometers

Details

Event Laser Focus World
Technical Publications
January 1st 2011
Most optical sensors rely on the detection of small wavelength changes in response to changes in temperature, strain, adhesion of bio-particles, or change in the chemical environment for the system under test. Examples include Fiber Bragg Grating (FBG)-based sensors, laser cavity, micro-sphere, or micro-ring based sensors, and surface-plasmon-resonance or photonic-crystal sensors. Despite their advantages including electromagnetic-interference (EMI) immunity and use in remote and distributed-sensing applications, optical sensors typical require bulky and expensive interrogation systems (such as a broadband light source/grating-based spectrum analyzer setup or a tunable light source with photodetector) capable of resolving small wavelength shifts to sub-nanometer or even picometer resolution. But a new technique developed by researchers at Palo Alto Research Center (PARC; Palo Alto, CA) incorporates a position-sensitive detector to create a miniature read-out interrogator unit that can resolve wavelength changes as small as 50 fm.

Citation

Kiesel, P. Miniature read-out sensor resolves wavelength to 50 femtometers. Laser Focus World. 2011 January; 47 (1): 21-22.

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