Isolated sensor networks for high-voltage environments using a single polymer optical fiber and LEDs for remote powering as well as data transmission

Fischer, Jakob; Schuster, Timo; Wächter, Christian; Luber, Michael; Vinogradov, Juri; Ziemann, Olaf; Engelbrecht, Rainer

Many applications in high voltage or explosive environments require sensors which are electrically isolated from other components of a system. These sensors need remote powering as well as wireless or isolated data transmission links. A possible solution can be based on optically powered optical sensor links. These typically employ four different photonic components: for the data communication a fast LED as a transmitter and a photo diode as a receiver, furthermore for sensor powering a high-power light source and a photonic power converter. Additionally, two optical fibers are required for optical remote powering and the optical data link. In this paper we demonstrate an optically powered optical sensor link using only low-cost high-brightness LEDs and a single polymer optical fiber (POF) for all of these tasks. Coupling efficiencies, power transmission and modulation bandwidths are analyzed for LEDs with different colors. Potentials for many mW of electrical remote powering and Mbit sinline-formula−1 sensor data links are demonstrated over 10 m of POF. This approach can be used for almost any electronic sensor with moderate power requirements.

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Fischer, Jakob / Schuster, Timo / Wächter, Christian / et al: Isolated sensor networks for high-voltage environments using a single polymer optical fiber and LEDs for remote powering as well as data transmission. 2018. Copernicus Publications.

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