Ray Optics Simulation of Sagnac Interferometers and Ring Laser Gyros

Christopher Boucher April 20, 2018

Attitude detection, the measurement of an object’s orientation and rotation in three-dimensional space, is a crucial element in aircraft and spacecraft navigation. Recently, ring laser gyroscopes and fiber ring gyroscopes have proven to be viable alternatives to traditional mechanical gyros for accurately measuring rotations. The fundamental operating principle of such devices is an optical phenomenon called the Sagnac effect. In this blog post, we’ll employ ray optics simulation to observe this effect in a basic Sagnac interferometer.

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Jiyoun Munn April 3, 2018

Since high-speed communication is inevitable for evolving wireless systems, the demand for a higher data rate, higher frequency, larger spectrum, and wider bandwidth increases. When dealing with a wide bandwidth, multiple devices may have to be deployed in a wireless communication system to filter out unwanted noise and interfering signals, enhance the signal-to-noise ratio, and improve the sensitivity. A single tunable filter can replace these devices, reducing the system’s size and weight and the fabrication cost of multiple components.

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Caty Fairclough January 29, 2018

Micromirrors have two key benefits: low power consumption and low manufacturing costs. For this reason, many industries use micromirrors for a wide range of MEMS applications. To save time and money when designing micromirrors, engineers can accurately account for thermal and viscous damping and analyze device performance via the COMSOL Multiphysics® software.

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Bridget Paulus January 19, 2018

In civil engineering and the biomedical field, strain gauges are used to measure deformation sustained by various objects. Typically, foil gauges are used, but they have low sensitivity. MEMS-based gauges, like the double-ended tuning fork (DETF) strain gauge, offer better performance. To optimize the design of a new DETF strain gauge, researchers used the COMSOL Multiphysics® software and compared the results to an analytical model.

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Caty Fairclough October 4, 2017

Kelvin probes provide a nondestructive and contact-free method of measuring the work function differences of various material combinations. These probes can have a variety of designs, including different tip shapes, lengths, and radii. To find an optimal design while minimizing the need for extensive testing, one group of researchers used the COMSOL Multiphysics® software. Here’s what they found…

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Bridget Cunningham July 17, 2017

On the morning of March 22, 2006, NASA launched their Space Technology 5 mission. For about three months, miniaturized satellites explored Earth’s magnetic fields collecting high-quality measurements. Beyond gathering scientific data, the mission represents a turning point. Instead of large traditional satellite missions, miniaturized technology is taking precedence in space exploration. And within these systems, MEMS technology could serve as a means of active thermal control. Further improvements are already taking shape with the help of multiphysics simulation.

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Henrik Sönnerlind May 22, 2017

In some applications, particularly within the MEMS field, it is important to study the sensitivity of a device’s eigenfrequencies with respect to a variation in temperature. In this blog post, we show how to do this using COMSOL Multiphysics® version 5.3. We also explore effects like stress softening, geometric changes, and the temperature dependence of material properties.

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Bridget Cunningham April 12, 2017

Many parameters can impact the strength and stability of concrete structures, so finding ways to efficiently measure their condition is key. Embedding sensors within these structures can provide such assessments. To accurately model these systems, it’s important to account for the complex phenomena within concrete and analyze their impact on sensor performance. The flexibility of the COMSOL Multiphysics® software allowed one research team to do just that. Their findings offer insight into designing more reliable sensors for concrete monitoring.

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Bridget Cunningham March 28, 2017

Measuring acceleration is important in high-speed dynamics, as velocity, force, and pressure are derived from it. Sensing elements inside accelerometers make it possible to obtain such measurements. As technology advances, these sensor packages must be optimized to handle higher vibrational frequency bandwidths. To accomplish this, researchers tested their novel piezoresistive sensor chip as part of a package design. Their simulation results, which agree well with experimental data, pave the way for optimizing sensor packages to achieve higher bandwidths.

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Bridget Cunningham December 26, 2016

Designing MEMS devices, such as piezoresistive pressure sensors, comes with challenges. For instance, accurately describing the operation of these devices requires the integration of various physics. With the COMSOL Multiphysics® software, you can easily couple multiphysics simulations in order to test a device’s performance and generate reliable results. Today, we’ll look at one example that showcases such capabilities.

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Bridget Cunningham September 7, 2016

Many modern devices leverage piezoelectricity. When analyzing the design of such devices, you want to be confident in the reliability of the obtained results. By utilizing the COMSOL Multiphysics® simulation software, you can achieve accurate results quickly. To prove it to you, we have created a benchmark model of a piezoelectric transducer.

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