Single-Mode Modified Tapered Fiber Structure Functionalized With GO-PVA Composite Layer for Relative Humidity Sensing


A sensitive tapered optical fiber sensor incorporating graphene oxide (GO) and polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) composite film for the rapid measurement of changes in relative humidity was proposed and experimentally demonstrated. The sensing principle was based on the intensity modulation of the transmitted light induced by the refractive index changes of the sensitive coatings. The sensing region was obtained by tapering a section of single-mode optical fiber (SMF) from its original 125 µm diameter down to 9.03 µm. The tapered structure was then modified through deposition of GO/PVA nanocomposites by using the dip-coating technique. The field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM) and Raman spectroscopy were used to characterize the structure of the composite film. As evidenced by a Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis, the presence of oxygen functional groups (such as −OH and COOH) on the GO structure enabled the attachment of PVA molecules through hydrogen bonding and strong adhesion between GO/PVA layers. The performance of the sensor was tested over a wide range (20%RH to 99.9%RH) of relative humidity. The sensor showed a good response with its signal increasing linearly with the surrounding humidity. The tapered optical fiber sensor with the coating of GO/0.3g PVA achieved the highest sensitivity [0.5290RH (%)]. The stability, repeatability, reversibility, as well as response time of the designated sensor were also measured and analyzed.


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The authors would like to thank Laser Centre, Ibnu-Sina Institute for Scientific and Industrial Research (ISI-SIR), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) for the support. This research work has been supported by UTM_TDR 06G13 research grant. Aneez SYUHADA and Muhammad Salleh SHAMSUDIN acknowledge the funding from the UTM Zamalah Scholarship Award supported by the School of Graduate Studies, UTM. The authors want to thank the critics of the anonymous reviewers and valuable suggestions for improving this manuscript.

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Correspondence to Muhammad Safwan Abd. Aziz.

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Syuhada, A., Shamsudin, M.S., Daud, S. et al. Single-Mode Modified Tapered Fiber Structure Functionalized With GO-PVA Composite Layer for Relative Humidity Sensing. Photonic Sens (2020).

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  • Humidity sensor
  • tapered optical fiber
  • Graphene Oxide
  • PVA