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A team of researchers has designed a tiny fiber optic force sensor, approximately equal in diameter to a human hair, capable of measuring extremely slight forces exerted by small objects. The light-based sensor is made of silica glass formed into a cylinder. It overcomes the limitations of force sensors based on MEMS, and it could be used in applications spanning medical systems and manufacturing.
Using a micromachining process characterized by a distinct etching process that the researchers initially developed to create complex, all-fiber microstructures, the team based the sensor on an optical cavity known as a Fabry-Pérot interferometer, which is made from two parallel reflecting surfaces. The miniature sensor is equipped…READ MORE