A slab-coupled optical fiber sensor (SCOS) falls into a narrow class of all-dielectric optical fiber electric field sensors, which makes it a perfect candidate for measurements of high electric fields in environments where presence of conductors is highly perturbing to the system under test. Its nonlinear response to high fields requires a new nonlinear calibration technique. A nonlinear calibration method is explained and demonstrated to successfully measure high electric fields, as well as high voltages with dynamic range up to 50 dB. Furthermore, a SCOS can be fitted into narrow spaces and make highly localized measurements due to its small size. This allows a SCOS to be integrated inside a standard high voltage coaxial cable, such as RG-218. Effects of partial discharge and arcing is minimized by development of a fabrication method to avoid introduction of impurities, especially air-bubbles, into the cable during SCOS insertion. Low perturbation of the measured voltage is shown by simulating the introduced voltage reflections to be on the order of –50 dB. It is also shown that a SCOS can be inserted into other cables without significant perturbation to the voltage. A complete high voltage and high electric field measurement system is built based on the high-voltage modifications of the SCOS technology. The coaxial SCOS is enhanced for robustness. Enhancements include packaging a SCOS into stronger ceramic trough, strengthening the fiber with kevlar reinforced furcation tubing and protecting the sensor with metal braces and protective shells. The interrogator is protected from electromagnetic interference with an RF-shielded box. Reduction in power losses introduced by the new PANDA-SCOS technology allows interrogator bandwidths to be increased up to 1.2 GHz. The whole measurement process is streamlined with dedicated software, developed specifically for high voltage and electric field measurements with support for the nonlinear calibration.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Electrical and Computer Engineering



Date Submitted


Document Type





high electric field measurement, high voltage measurement, optical fiber sensor, lithium- niobate, slab-coupled optical fiber sensor, SCOS, corona, arcing, coaxial cable, pulsed power, fiber Bragg grating, FBG, feedback loop, strain, vibration