Fiber optic sensors for plant detection

FBG sensors for plant detectionA novel fiber optic technology developed by researchers from Singapore becomes the basis for a novel fiber sensor for plant detection. The fiber optic sensors perform both detection and real-time monitoring of arsenic levels in underground environments. Such monitoring by distributed sensing systems is very important because it shows the presence and quantity of the metal.

The operating principle of this fiber optic system is based on the plantation of fiber sensors into plant tissue. Thus, fiber optic technology allows for detecting arsenic as low as 0.2 parts per billion. Compact and low-cost electronics records data. To be more precise, the combination of fiber optic sensors and plants operate as a fully functional environmental detection system.

It should be noted that such fiber optic systems can be useful in environmental monitoring and agriculture. The thing is that arsenic is a widespread contaminant in most crops, so its detection is crucial for structural health monitoring. Additionally, it is dangerous for human health because it causes cardiovascular disease and even cancers.

It is possible to tune selectively these fiber optic sensors to detect particular arsenic quantities. Herewith, the nanotubes used in fiber sensors do not photobleach, therefore, they have stable emission over time. These fiber optic systems are safe for plants in which they are installed. The technology has been already tested and demonstrated great improvement in time- and equipment-intensive sampling techniques.

“The newly demonstrated technique benefits from the natural ability of plants to extract analytes from their roots and move them throughout their body.” The fiber optic sensor embedded in the living plant presents perfect operation. The researchers use a camera in the fiber optic system to obtain real-time imaging and analysis. Herewith, this fiber sensor can be controlled with compact low-cost electronics.

The tests have been already carried out on spinach and rice, as well as a species of fern. Some properties of fern species promote optimizing the fiber optic sensors to locate extremely low concentrations of arsenic. Compared to the novel fiber system, conventional sensors have a 10 ppb limit.

Thus, fiber optic technology enables the development of more resistant crops to toxic contaminants. The researchers claim that it is possible to transform any living plants into fiber sensors for arsenic detection. Now it is planned to create a compact, portable fiber optic system to control the fluorescence of the sensors within the plants. Finally, novel fiber optic sensors are highly reliable no only in labs but also under field conditions.

Optromix is a fast-growing vendor of fiber Bragg grating (FBG) product line such as fiber Bragg grating sensors, for example, fbg strain sensors, FBG interrogators and multiplexers, Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) systems, Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS) systems. The company creates and supplies a broad variety of fiber optic solutions for monitoring worldwide. If you are interested in structural health monitoring systems and want to learn more, please contact us at info@optromix.com

Fiber optic sensors for biological liquids

FBG sensors for biological liquidsA team of scientists from Israel and Russia has developed a novel, straightforward, and low-cost fiber optic technology. It allows for the testing of liquid biological samples. Herewith, the developed fiber optic system is very promising in clinical settings, containing real-time testing during surgery.

To be more precise, fiber optic sensors are widely applied in the healthcare system for real-time diagnostic testing for biological samples. The fiber sensors offer a high level of sensitivity, however, usually “that sensitivity comes at a cost in terms of time and resources.”

Therefore, scientists tend to create simple, inexpensive fiber optic sensors as a more efficient alternative. It should be noted that they pay careful attention to the optical dispersion of the refractive index of a sample. The thing is that this process of the fiber optic system operates as a fingerprint of sorts that controls the changes in its composition.

Thus, the team has presented the concept of multispectral fiber optic sensing for liquid biological samples in both static and real-time modes. Herewith, fiber optic technology is accurate, robust, and highly sensitive to impurities in the sample. These fiber optic sensors will be helpful for diagnostic applications and real-time simulations of different biological processes.

The fiber sensors include hollow-core microstructured optical fibers. It is a specific type of optical fiber that keeps light inside a hollow core of the fiber optic system surrounded by microstructured cladding. Liquid passes through champers of fiber sensors, and the team registers spectral shifts of maxima and minima in the transmission spectrum.

These signals show the chemical composition of the sample. Additionally, the fiber optic sensors do not require an external cavity or interferometer. This is the main reason why fiber optic sensing is straightforward and virtually cheap to create. Such fiber optic technology has been already tested by scientists.

The fiber sensors test the concentration of bovine serum albumin, generally applied in such experiments, dissolved in water and phosphate-buffered saline solution. The fiber optic system demonstrated a resolution similar to the accuracy of standard albumin tests and complied with clinical requirements.

The potential application of these fiber optic sensors includes the analysis of biomarkers of various types. It is necessary to test the fiber sensors on other bioanalytics and then modify them to enhance specificity. The fiber optic technology opens new opportunities ina fast, inexpensive and robust analysis of blood and other bodily liquids in real-time.

Optromix is a fast-growing vendor of fiber Bragg grating (FBG) product line such as fiber Bragg grating sensors, for example, fbg strain sensors, FBG interrogators and multiplexers, Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) systems, Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS) systems. The company creates and supplies a broad variety of fiber optic solutions for monitoring worldwide. If you are interested in structural health monitoring systems and want to learn more, please contact us at info@optromix.com

Fiber optic sensors for ammonia detection

FBG sensors for ammonia detectionA team of scientists from Denmark in a collaboration with chemical engineers has presented novel accurate fiber optic sensors. They allow for significantly decreasing the level of air pollution. The operating principle of this fiber sensor is based on modern telecom technology. It helps to detect and measure ammonia in the atmosphere by the sensing system, a laser, and hollow-core optical fibers.

To be more precise, the fiber optic system provides continuous ammonia monitoring for agricultural application. Additionally, the fiber optic sensor can be created at a pretty low cost. The benefits of fiber sensors such as compact size, high reliability, and low cost meet the requirements of a portable system for detecting ammonia.

It should be noted that such a fiber optic technology is still under development. The thing is that the sensitivity of the fiber sensor requires improvements, which scientists try to perform. Even though the main purpose of the new sensing system is ammonia detection, it is possible to use fiber optic sensors for the detection of other gases, for instance, greenhouse gases. 

Moreover, fiber optic technology operates as a part of one agricultural project. In this project, scientists develop new techniques and technology to measure and reduce air pollution from the agricultural sector. Nowadays the agricultural sector is considered to be the main contributor to air pollution (mainly caused by ammonia). Therefore, agricultural pollution is the biggest environmental issue that requires efficient fiber sensors.

The thing is that now ammonia emissions are challenging to measure at the farm level. Compared to novel fiber optic sensors, traditional systems for ammonia detection have a high cost. Fiber optic technology is very promising with great prospects for agriculture. “The ability to continuously and cost-effectively track the development in ammonia emissions from agriculture offers completely new opportunities for the industry to experiment on decreasing the emissions.”

Scientists claim that there are already established figures considering air pollution from agriculture. Nevertheless, the future potential of fiber optic sensors may greatly transform the detection way of ammonia caused by agricultural farms. The new fiber optic technology promotes farmers to control their emissions continuously.

Finally, precise monitoring of ammonia emissions provided by sensing systems makes streamline operations far better. Thus, fiber sensors lead to emissions-based regulations that help reduce the environmental impact of agriculture. The development of these fiber optic sensors will continue until the next year.

Optromix is a fast-growing vendor of fiber Bragg grating (FBG) product line such as fiber Bragg grating sensors, for example, fbg strain sensors, FBG interrogators and multiplexers, Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) systems, Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS) systems. The company creates and supplies a broad variety of fiber optic solutions for monitoring worldwide. If you are interested in structural health monitoring systems and want to learn more, please contact us at info@optromix.com