Benefits of Spectral Property Engineering in Distributed Brillouin Fiber Sensing
As one of the most consolidated distributed fiber sensors based on stimulated Brillouin scattering, the Brillouin optical time-domain analyzer (BOTDA) has been developed for decades. Despite the commercial availability and outstanding progresses which has been achieved, the intrinsic Lorentzian gain spectrum restricts the sensing performance from possible further enhancements and hence limits the field of validity of the technique. In this paper, the novel method of engineering the gain spectral properties of the Brillouin scattering and its application on static and dynamic BOTDA sensors will be reviewed. Such a spectral property engineering has not only provided improvements to BOTDA, but also might open a new way to enhance the performance of all kinds of distributed Brillouin fiber sensors.