Compact Optical Detector Array

Researchers at Dartmouth developed a novel method to configure an optical detector array that is robust, compact, low crosstalk, and has several applications.

1) Multimode fiber data-links

The array can be matched to the arrays of multimode fibers that are commonly used in local area data networks. The proposed detector array is unusually robust and low cost, with negligible cross-talk compared to those presently on the market. It is expected to work out to bandwidths of about 20 MHz.

2) Optical vibration sensor

The optical detector array is presently being designed for detecting vibrations by monitoring a reflected light beam. Applications include: non-destructive testing, security monitoring, quality assurance, safety monitoring. The detector array can be scaled to optical fiber dimensions, enabling a monitor, even without line of sight.

3) Optical detection in the presence of sunlight

The proposed array has a very large dynamic range and does not lose sensitivity in the presence of sunlight. A number of applications using this detector array in the security arena can be envisaged, such as in the detection of intrusion.

Dartmouth researchers have completed a theoretical prediction for the signal-to-noise ratio for the newly designed detector and compared it to that of an amplified photo-diode output. Our research discovered the conditions under which the detector array has a larger signal-to-noise ratio. These conditions are very favorable for use in practical applications. A single element detector was built and tested and was performing as anticipated. A proto-type array for vibration sensing was designed and is in the process of being built.

This technology is claimed in the published United States Patent Application Nos. 10/532,453 and 11/413,463. We are seeking an industrial partner interested in its further development and commercialization. (Ref: J216)

Type of Offer: Licensing

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