One of the most important branches in the development trend of the traditional fiber optic physical sensor is the miniaturization of sensor structure. Miniature fiber optic sensor can realize point measurement, and then to develop sensor networks to achieve quasi-distributed or distributed sensing as well as line measurement to area monitoring, which will greatly extend the application area of fiber optic sensors. The development of MEMS technology brings a light path to address the problems brought by the procedure of sensor miniaturization. Sensors manufactured by MEMS technology possess the advantages of small volume, light weight, easy fabricated and low cost. In this paper, a fiber optic extrinsic Fabry-Perot interferometric underwater acoustic probe utilizing micromachined diaphragm collaborated with fiber optic technology and MEMS technology has been designed and implemented to actualize underwater acoustic sensing. Diaphragm with central embossment, where the embossment is used to anti-hydrostatic pressure which would largely deflect the diaphragm that induce interferometric fringe fading, has been made by double-sided etching of silicon on insulator. By bonding the acoustic-sensitive diaphragm as well as a cleaved fiber end in ferrule with an outer sleeve, an extrinsic Fabry-Perot interferometer has been constructed. The sensor has been interrogated by quadrature-point control method and tested in field-stable acoustic standing wave tube. Results have been shown that the recovered signal detected by the sensor coincided well with the corresponding transmitted signal and the sensitivity response was flat in frequency range from 10 Hz to 2kHz with the value about -154.6 dB re. 1/μPa. It has been manifest that the designed sensor could be used as an underwater acoustic probe.
Study of fiber optic extrinsic Fabry-Pérot sensors utilizing state-of-the-art MEMS technology mostly focus on sensor fabrication for various applications, while the signal interrogation is still insatiable to current application. In this paper, we propose a white light path matched differential interferometer dynamic sensing system utilizing phase generated carrier demodulation scheme. A step motor with a movable mirror and a fiber-wound piezoelectric transducer string are used to act path matching and phase modulation respectively. Experimental results show that the sensing signal could be correctly recovered with low distortion and the phase noise spectrum level is less than -100 dB re. rad/√Hz above 2.5 kHz.