- Conference date: 27–29 June 2012
- Location: Ancona, Italy
Laser-Doppler vibrometry (LDV) is a proven technique for vibration analysis of mechanical structures. A wavelength of 633 nm is usually employed because of the availability of the relatively inexpensive Helium-Neon laser source which has a good coherence behavior. However, coherence break-down through the beat of multiple longitudinal modes and the limited detector carrier-to-noise-ratio (CNR) at a measurement laser power of 1 mW have prevented a wide use of LDV in remote sensing applications. Such applications in civil engineering are bridges, towers or wind turbines. The lower photon energy of IR light at 1550 nm wavelength increases the CNR by a factor 2.4. This helps especially in the condition where the carrier power decreases below the FM threshold. We have designed a heterodyne interferometer which allows the shot noise limited detection at 1550 nm wavelength close to the theoretical possible CNR. We present calculations of the fundamental noise contributions in interferometric light detection for a comparison of the achievable CNR between common HeNe vibrometers and IR vibrometers. The calculations are backed by measurements that show the devices working close to the theoretical limits. The achievable noise level of the demodulated velocity signal is shown in dependence from the standoff distance. Our novel heterodyne interferometer has been transferred to the Polytec product RSV-150. An application example of this new sensor will be demonstrated.
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