Fully distributed temperature and strain fiber optic sensor

Summary of the technology

The sensor increases the measurement range to up to 100 km with a resolution of 2 m (50000 measurement points). It also allows dynamic strain measurements completing a full strain measurement per second in each of the 50000 measurement points.

Description of the technology

The Photonics Engineering Group (University of Alcalá de Henares) offers a 2 meter resolution long-range Brillouin distributed temperature and strain fiber optic sensor that reaches 100 km. The sensor is low cost, flexible and integrable in all kinds of civil infrastructure (tunnels, bridges, railways, etc). The group seeks to collaborate with national and international research centers as well as companies to spread the range of possible applications of the system. The group would like to contact with companies interested on this kind of sensing for the final development and application.


The Photonics Engineering Group (University of Alcalá de Henares) is developing a temperature and strain distributed sensor based on BOTDA (Brillouin Optical Time Domain). Brillouin distributed optical fiber sensors are one of the most useful systems to provide temperature and strain monitoring to large civil structures. A distributed sensor provides measurements over its whole length as opposed to point sensors. As fiber optic behaves both as sensor and as carrier of the information its implementation is easy. Our sensor features accurate measurements over 100 km with as low as 2 meter resolution. The sensor is based on the well established fiber optics technology which provides advantages such as low cost, small size, low weight and flexibility, ease of maintenance and integration. The sensor can be used in places where no electronics are allowed due to security or interference reasons. The sensor allows the monitoring of >10000 measuring points with a single fiber cable and a single interrogation unit.

Main advantages of its use

  • The sensors are low cost, flexible and easy to integrate. They are also based on the very well established technology that is fiber optics. Additionally, due to their electromagnetic immunity and small size they are very suitable for environmental applications where measurements have to be carried out with the minimum interference.


  • Civil engineering companies, aeronautic that need to control the strain in their systems or structures (pipes, bridges, aircrafts).Environment related companies interested in temperature and strain measurement.Companies interested in temperature and strain control integrated with alarm sensors.

Related Keywords

  • Sensor Technology related to measurements
  • Aeronautical technology / Avionics
  • Construction maintenance and monitoring methods & equipment
  • Environmental and Biometrics Sensors, Actuators
  • Environmental Engineering / Technology
  • Engineering and consulting services related to construction
  • Fiber optic
  • sensors
  • photonics
  • optical properties
  • distributed sensor

About Universidad de Alcalá-OTRI

The Technology Transfer Office at Alcalá University serves as a liaison between the University and its socioeconomic environment in terms of research and innovation. It encorages collaboration between research groups from universities and companies/institutions, with the objective to promote and commercialize research results and scientific capabilities.

Some of the services offered by this office are specified in the following list:

- Promotion of R & D and improvement of the relationships with companies.
- Promote the participation in R & D projects applicants to public calls (regional, national and European).
- Advising, processing and monitoring of patents and other forms of industrial protection.
- Support in the negotiation of contracts and agreements for R&D&i

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