What are the advantages of distributed temperature sensing fiber optic cable?

17TH MAY 2021

Advantages of distributed temperature sensing fiber optic cable

Temperature sensing/monitoring using fiber is getting more popular as it has some advantages over electrical and mechanical sensors. With the increase in the sizes of buildings and infrastructures, temperature sensing using conventional electrical and mechanical sensors become a huge cost contributor. For example, to have temperature sensing in a transport tunnel that is used for a fire alarm system, it is required to be precise in locating the source of fire, hence conventional sensors will be designed to be placed at short intervals to avoid blind spots. And these conventional sensors require electrical wiring for power and data, piping/conduits and junction boxes when installed. Whereas the fiber sensing cable does not need any power or electrical/data wiring and this makes deployment simpler and cost-effective.

DTS cables in transport tunnel




Picture 1: Entire length of the DTS cable acts as the linear sensor for temperature sensing thus there is no need to place the sensors at a short interval

Another advantage of using a fiber sensing cable is the size and flexibility during deployment. Depending on different situation, the fiber can be housed in different cable construction to accommodate the environment.

FiberTek can provide the following range of fibers to accommodate different temperature range of measurement. The fibers are coated with different materials to have different operating temperature range as follows:

Operating temperatures supported by different optical fibers




To accommodate different brand of the interrogator, FiberTek can provide the OS2 singlemode fiber, OM1 and OM2 multimode fiber. Another advantage of using FiberTek’s sensing fiber cable is that we can provide different cable constructions to house the sensing fiber.

In the situation where non-metallic cable construction is required, FiberTek can provide various construction with different jacketing material. For example, to monitor the temperature of power cable, bus bars, power generator, etc, the concern about the induced current in the sensing cable will be eliminated by using non-metallic cable construction.

In the situation where the sensing cable is placed in places where the cable is being compressed or deployed in a harsh environment, armoured cables are introduced. FiberTek can provide armouring with corrugated steel tape, galvanized steel wire, stainless steel wire, etc.

In view of using Fire-resistant fiber optic cable to perform temperature sensing, especially in fire detection, FiberTek does not recommend that because the fire-resistant cable is designed to retard the temperature from reaching the fiber so as to prolong the life span of the fiber. In temperature sensing, the sensitivity of the fiber to temperature change is crucial. It is desired that the temperature change from the cable external reaches the fiber within as soon as possible so that the interrogator can pick up the change in light reflection from the fiber to interpret into temperature data and location data.

Fire Resistant Fiber Optic Cables


Picture 2: Fire Resistant Fiber Optic Cables

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