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A Bio-Compatible Fiber Optic pH Sensor Based on a Thin Core Interferometric Technique

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Author list: Andersson, Henrik;Engholm, Magnus;Hammarling, Krister;Nilsson, Hans-Erik;Sandberg, Mats
Publication year: 2019
ISSN: 2304-6732

Abstract

There is an increasing demand for compact, reliable and versatile sensor concepts for pH-level monitoring within several industrial, chemical as well as bio-medical applications. Many pHsensors concepts have been proposed, however, there is still a need for improved sensor solutionswith respect to reliability, durability and miniaturization but also for multiparameter sensing. Here wepresent a conceptual verification, which includes theoretical simulations as well as experimentalevaluation of a fiber optic pH-sensor based on a bio-compatible pH sensitive material not previouslyused in this context. The fiber optic sensor is based on a Mach-Zehnder interferometric technique,where the pH sensitive material is coated on a short, typically 20-25 mm thin core fiber splicedbetween two standard single mode fibers. The working principle of the sensor is simulated by usingCOMSOL Multiphysics. The simulations are used as a guideline for the construction of the sensorsthat have been experimentally evaluated in different liquids with pH ranging from 1.95 to 11.89. The results are promising, showing the potential for the development of bio-compatible fiber optic pH sensor with short response time, high sensitivity and broad measurement range. The developedsensor concept can find future use in many medical- or bio-chemical applications as well as inenvironmental monitoring of large areas. Challenges encountered during the sensor developmentdue to variation in the design parameters are discussed.


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