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Electro-optical voltage sensor head

United States Patent

5,731,579
March 24, 1998
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Idaho National Laboratory - Visit the Technology Transfer and Commercialization Office Website
A miniature electro-optic voltage sensor system capable of accurate operation at high voltages. The system employs a transmitter, a sensor disposed adjacent to but out of direct electrical contact with a conductor on which the voltage is to be measured, a detector, and a signal processor. The transmitter produces a beam of electromagnetic radiation which is routed into the sensor where the beam undergoes the Pockels electro-optic effect. The electro-optic effect causes phase shifting in the beam, which is in turn converted to a pair of independent beams, from which the voltage of a system based on its E-field is determined when the two beams are normalized by the signal processor. The sensor converts the beam by splitting the beam in accordance with the axes of the beam's polarization state (an ellipse whose ellipticity varies between -1 and +1 in proportion to voltage) into at least two AM signals. These AM signals are fed into a signal processor and processed to determine the voltage between a ground conductor and the conductor on which voltage is being measured.
Woods; Gregory K. (Idaho Falls, ID)
Lockheed Idaho Technologies Company (Idaho Falls, ID)
08/ 570,152
December 11, 1995
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN OF THE INVENTION The United States has rights in this invention pursuant to contract number DE-ACO7-94ID13223 between the U.S. Department of Energy and Lockheed Idaho Technologies Company.