The proof of concept for a photonic cavity sensor for oil, water and gas detection is reported. The optical design employs an optimized photonic crystal cavity with fluidic infiltration of gas, water or (reservoir) oils. The 3D design and simulation is discussed, followed by the nanofabrication in standard silicon on insulator wafers (SoI). Using an optofluidic cicuit with PDMS channels, the fluid flow to the photonic cavity is controlled with syringe pumps. The variations in dielectric value (refractive index) change with the involved media result in a shift of the cavity resonant wavelength. For fluid change from water to typical oil (refractive index difference of 0.12), we report a wavelenght shift of up to 12 nm at the measurement wavelength of 1550 nm, in very good agreement with the simulations. We follow the optical response at a fixed wavelength, when feeding alternate flows or bubbles of oil/water through the optofluidic chip, and observe the flow pattern on camera. Finally we discuss the outlook and antifouling of the sensor with a special design. This work is supported by Shell Global Solutions.
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Huub W. Salemink and Yazhao Liu, "Nanophotonic sensors for oil sensing (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10107, Smart Photonic and Optoelectronic Integrated Circuits XIX, 101070D (Presented at SPIE OPTO: February 01, 2017; Published: 28 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2251488.5393342305001.
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