Within the oil and gas industry, there are two main areas of use for optical fibers, firstly for sensing, and secondly for communication. Fiber optic sensors offer significant advantages over electrical sensors due to their small size, ability to operate at high temperatures, reduced risk of failure when exposed to water (or other conductive liquids) and they do not require electrical power at the sensor head.
Beyond fiber sensors, the oil and gas industry has also adopted fiber optic communication technology to allow higher bandwidth communication with the shoreline and seafloor equipment and subsequently reduce communication cable size and weight by replacing the copper cables with optical fibers.
The environments in which oil and gas fiber optic sensors need to operate requires specially designed fibers to ensure long lifetimes and performance that exceeds the historic technologies. In many of the sensing application areas, a standard telecommunications fiber will not be suitable, so Fibercore has designed a range of specialty optical fibers specifically designed for use in the oil and gas industries.