International Journal of Extreme Manufacturing, Volume. 3, Issue 2, 25401(2021)

Femtosecond laser fabrication of nanograting-based distributed fiber sensors for extreme environmental applications

Mohan Wang1, Kehao Zhao1, Jingyu Wu1, Yuqi Li1, Yang Yang1,2, Sheng Huang1, Jieru Zhao1, Thomas Tweedle3, David Carpenter4, Guiqiu Zheng4, Qingxu Yu2, and Kevin P Chen1、*
Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15261, United States of America
  • 2School of Optoelectronic Engineering and Instrument Science, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116081, People’s Republic of China
  • 3Westinghouse Electric Company LLC, Pittsburgh, PA 15235, United States of America
  • 4Nuclear Reactor Laboratory, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 138 Albany Street, Cambridge, MA 02139, United States of America
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    The femtosecond laser has emerged as a powerful tool for micro- and nanoscale device fabrication. Through nonlinear ionization processes, nanometer-sized material modifications can be inscribed in transparent materials for device fabrication. This paper describes femtosecond precision inscription of nanograting in silica fiber cores to form both distributed and point fiber sensors for sensing applications in extreme environmental conditions. Through the use of scanning electron microscope imaging and laser processing optimization, high-temperature stable, Type II femtosecond laser modifications were continuously inscribed, point by point, with only an insertion loss at 1 dB m-1 or 0.001 dB per point sensor device. High-temperature performance of fiber sensors was tested at 1000 ℃, which showed a temperature fluctuation of ±5.5 ℃ over 5 days. The low laser-induced insertion loss in optical fibers enabled the fabrication of a 1.4 m, radiation-resilient distributed fiber sensor. The in-pile testing of the distributed fiber sensor further showed that fiber sensors can execute stable and distributed temperature measurements in extreme radiation environments. Overall, this paper demonstrates that femtosecond-laser-fabricated fiber sensors are suitable measurement devices for applications in extreme environments.


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    Mohan Wang, Kehao Zhao, Jingyu Wu, Yuqi Li, Yang Yang, Sheng Huang, Jieru Zhao, Thomas Tweedle, David Carpenter, Guiqiu Zheng, Qingxu Yu, Kevin P Chen. Femtosecond laser fabrication of nanograting-based distributed fiber sensors for extreme environmental applications[J]. International Journal of Extreme Manufacturing, 2021, 3(2): 25401

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    Paper Information


    Received: Sep. 23, 2020

    Accepted: --

    Published Online: Jan. 10, 2022

    The Author Email: Chen Kevin P (



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