Optical Fiber Sensors

By Prof. Balaji Srinivasan   |   IIT Madras
Learners enrolled: 35
Optical Fiber Sensors is intended as a senior undergraduate / graduate level course that introduces the different types of optical sensor technologies and their applications in metrology, navigation, and structural health monitoring. The learning objectives of the course include:
  • Identify different types of optical sensors and their performance characteristics
  • Analyze a given sensing requirement and design appropriate sensor
  • Realize and implement an optimal sensing solution for a given requirement

INTENDED AUDIENCE  : Final year UG, and PG students including MS/PhD students
PREREQUISITES : Introduction to Photonics (preferable)
INDUSTRIES SUPPORT : Sterlite Technologies, SFO Technologies, TAG, Forbes Marshall
Course Status : Upcoming
Course Type : Elective
Duration : 12 weeks
Start Date : 24 Jan 2022
End Date : 15 Apr 2022
Exam Date : 24 Apr 2022 IST
Enrollment Ends : 31 Jan 2022
Category :
  • Electrical, Electronics and Communications Engineering
  • Photonics
Credit Points : 3
Level : Undergraduate/Postgraduate

Course layout

Week 1-2: 
  • Why optical sensors?
  • Different types Sensors & Instrumentation metrics
  • Optical receiver design; noise issues
Week 3-4: 
  • Amplitude Modulated sensors
  • Lock-in detection
Week 5-6:
  • Phase modulated sensors
  • Phase noise analysis and mitigation; Sensitivity limits
Week 7-8:
  • Wavelength modulated sensors
  • Interrogator design, sensitivity limits
Week 9:
  • Polarization Modulated Sensors
  • Analysis of current sensor
Week 10-12:
  • Distributed Fiber Sensors
  • Raman & Brillouin scattering-based sensors

Books and references

Fiber Optic Sensors: An Introduction for Engineers and Scientists edited by Eric Udd, William B. Spillman, Jr., 2nd edition, Wiley Optical Fiber Sensors: Advanced Techniques and Applications edited by Ginu Rajan, CRC Press, 2017
Fiber Optic Sensors, edited by Shizhuo Yin, Paul B. Ruffin, Francis T.S. Yu, 2nd edition, CRC Press, 2017 Optical Fiber Sensors by John Dakin and Brain Culshaw, Artech House, 1997.
Optical Fiber Sensor Technology by K.T.V. Grattan & B.T. Megitt, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1999.

Instructor bio

Prof. Balaji Srinivasan

IIT Madras
Balaji Srinivasan obtained his Ph.D. in 2000 from the University of New Mexico, USA. He subsequently worked as a Senior Development Scientist at Corning Incorporated, USA, where he led technology development efforts related to 3D Optical Cross-connects and Channel Selectable Tunable Filters. Since 2004 he has been with the Indian Institute of Technology Madras as a faculty in the Department of Electrical Engineering, presently as Professor.

Balaji’s research interests span the development of active and passive optical components / subsystems for distributed fiber optic sensors and fiber lasers. Balaji has co-authored more than 150 journal and international conference publications, as well as 3 book chapters. He also has 7 patents to his credit (6 more pending). He has successfully executed or currently investigating 24 research projects worth over INR 17 Crores (USD 2.6M) of funding, resulting in the development of 6 technologies, 3 of which have been transferred to industry for commercialization.

Balaji presently serves in the Editorial Board of the prestigious Optics Express journal, and is one of the Directors of Unilumen Photonics Pvt Ltd, a fiber laser company incubated by IIT Madras. He has previously served as Member of the Photonics Working Group of the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DEITy), Government of India, Steering Committee of the National Photonics Fellowship, the Editorial Board of the Springer Photonic Network Communications Journal, and as a Chair for the 2012 International Conference on Fiber Optics and Photonics. For his professional accomplishments, he has been awarded Senior Membership in OSA.

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 24 April 2022 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 8 assignments out of the total 12 assignments given in the course.
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IIT Madras .It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning.

- NPTEL team

MHRD logo Swayam logo


Goto google play store