This paper characterizes an intrinsic, single-mode, polymer optical fiber (POF) sensor for use in large-strain applications such as civil infrastructures subjected to earthquake loading or systems with large shape changes such as morphing aircraft. The opto-mechanical response was formulated for the POF including a second-order (in strain) photoelastic effect as well as a second-order (in strain) solution for the deformation of the POF during loading. It is shown that four independent mechanical and opto-mechanical constants are required for the small deformation regime and six additional independent mechanical and opto-mechanical constants are required for the large deformation regime. The mechanical nonlinearity of a typical polymer optical fiber was experimentally measured in tension at various loading rates. The secant modulus of elasticity measured at small strains, roughly up to 2% strain, was measured to be ∼4GPa whereas at larger strains, roughly up to 4.5% strain, the secant modulus was measured to be ∼4.8GPa. As the loading rate was increased the yield strain increased, ranging from ∼3.2% at 1mm/min to ∼5% at 305 mm/min.
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Kiesel, S.M., Peters, K., Hassan, T. et al. Single-Mode Polymer Optical Fiber Sensors for Large Strain Applications. MRS Online Proceedings Library 969, 505 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-0969-W05-05