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Methods and systems for detecting gas flow by photoacoustic signal generation

United States Patent

9,910,014
March 6, 2018
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
A method for the detection of a gas flowing from a location in a structure is described. A hollow-core optical fiber is placed in a position adjacent the structure. The fiber includes a sound-conductive cladding layer; and further includes at least one aperture extending into its cross-sectional diameter. A beam of pulsed, optical is transmitted into the fiber with a tunable laser. The optical energy is characterized by a wavelength that can be absorbed by the gas that flows into the fiber through the aperture. This causes a temperature fluctuation in the region of gas absorption, which in turn generates an acoustic wave in the absorption region. The acoustic wave travels through the cladding layer, and can be detected with a microphone, so as to provide the location of gas flow, based on the recorded position and movement of the acoustic wave. A related system is also described.
Choudhury; Niloy (Glenville, NY), Challener; William Albert (Glenville, NY)
GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY (Schenectady, NY)
14/ 977,820
20170176489
December 22, 2015
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT This invention was made with Government support under award number DE-AR0000543, awarded by the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E). The Government has certain rights in the invention.