Optical Motion Sensors

Agilent Power Sensors – Electrical Power Sensors Rent

Many electrical power sensors comply with standards from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). IEEE 1451 governs digital technologies and includes a set of standards that defines open, common network-independent communication interfaces that can be used to connect electrical power sensors to measuring instruments and control devices. Others standards organizations for electrical power sensors include Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and the Canadian Standards Association (CSA).

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Electrical power sensors are used in electrical power grids across the United States and around the world. Although automatic controls are used to respond to system problems such as overcurrent, undercurrent, and voltage sags, trained personnel are needed to monitor the overall grid and respond to specific equipment problems. With the development of intelligent sensors, equipment problems can be detected and reported with greater efficiency.

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Optical Sensors

Power Sensors

The major semiconductor sensor types are Silicon (Si), Germanium (Ge) and Indium Gallium Arsenide (InGaAs). Additionally, these may be used with attenuating elements for high optical power testing, or wavelength selective elements so they only respond to particular wavelengths. These all operate in a similar type of circuit, however in addition to their basic wavelength response characteristics, each one has some other particular characteristics:

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  • Si detectors tend to saturate at relatively low power levels, and they are only useful in the visible and 850 nm bands.
  • Ge detectors saturate at the highest power levels, but have poor low power performance, poor general linearity over the entire power range, and are generally temperature sensitive. They are only marginally accurate for “1550 nm” testing, due to a combination of temperature and wavelength affecting responsivity at e.g. 1580 nm, however they provide useful performance over the commonly used 850 / 1300 / 1550 nm wavelength bands, so they are extensively deployed where lower accuracy is acceptable. Other limitations include: non-linearity at low power levels, and poor responsivity uniformity across the detector area.
  • InGaAs detectors saturate at intermediate levels. They offer generally good performance, but are often very wavelength sensitive around 850 nm. So they are largely used for singlemode fiber testing at 1270 – 1650 nm.

An important part of an optical power meter sensor, is the fiber optic connector interface. Careful optical design is required to avoid significant accuracy problems when used with the wide variety of fiber types and connectors typically encountered.

Another important component, is the sensor input amplifier. This needs very careful design to avoid significant performance degradation over a wide range of conditions.