Proceeding of the 5th International Conference on Multi-Material Micro Manufacture (4M) and the 4th International Conference on Micro Manufacturing (ICOMM) pages:351-355
4M/ICOMM location:Karlsruhe date:23-25 September 2009
This work deals with the establishment of a UV polymerisation procedure combined with moulding technology towards the development of a mass production technology for the fabrication of flexible polymers with optical fibres embedded. The concept is to provide an artificial sensing skin based on fibre optic sensors which can be applied to irregular or moveable surfaces for distributed pressure applications, as for instance in structural monitoring or rehabilitation. The selected polymers for such an application are here reviewed and their composition adjusted in order to accommodate the required flexibility. As compared to other techniques, UV polymerisation advantages are pointed out when moving towards industrial applications and large scale productions. Meanwhile, curing tests to embed optical fibres in the developed polymers are carried out with an in house developed glass mould set-up and the results are presented. Laser ablation of polymers is also discussed in order to reply the demand of complex fibre layout as for example meandering or curved shape patterns.