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Miniaturized laser Doppler vibrometer on silicon-on-insulator (SOI)

Research Area: Silicon photonics for biomedical applications

Main Researcher: Yanlu Li

A laser Doppler vibrometer (LDV) is a device used for measuring the vibrating speed of a target surface with coherent light. The working principle of this component is based on the Doppler theory. According to the Doppler theory, the frequency of a light beam reflected by a moving surface is different from its original value, and the amount of frequency shift is called the Doppler frequency. The Doppler shift is proportional to the instantaneous speed of the vibration. In principle, we can obtain the vibrating velocity of the surface by measuring the Doppler shift of the reflected light. The benefit of an LDV is that it can measure a vibration without contacting the target. They are widely used in applications which require non-contact velocity measurements. Nowadays, LDVs are also being used for measuring pulse wave velocities (PWVs) of arteries, which is an important parameter for many kinds of diseases.

The optical part of a simple LDV normally comprises a laser source, an interferometer, and one or several detectors. The reflected, useful optical signal is mixed with the reference signal in the interferometer, and a changing beat is formed in the mixture due to the Doppler shift in the reflected signal. The information of the instantaneous beat is detected by the photo detector(s), and sent to a demodulator to recover the measured velocities. An optical frequency shifter is often included in the reference arm so as to realize the so called heterodyne detection. Thanks to the frequency shifted reference signal, the detected beat is shifted to a relatively high frequency, so as to avoid the influence of low frequency noises.

Miniaturized LDV on SOI.
Miniaturized LDV on SOI.

We are interested in miniaturizing LDVs on the platform of silicon-on-insulator (SOI), which shows many advantages in reducing device size, power consumption and fabrication cost. Interferometers and detectors on SOI have been successfully reported. In this project, one most important work is to realize an optical frequency shifter on SOI, which has not been reported yet. We have proposed a serrodyne optical frequency shifter, which is a phase shifter with a sawtooth phase change. It has been successfully reported for a low frequency shift (1 kHz). A higher frequency shift using the carrier-injection/depletion based phase modulators will be studied.

Other people involved:

Related Research Projects

PhD thesises



    International Journals

  1. Y. Li, E. Dieussaert, R. Baets, Miniaturization of Laser Doppler vibrometers - a review, Sensors, 22, p.4735 doi:10.3390/s22134735 (2022)  Download this Publication (5.2MB).
  2. Silvia Seoni, Simeon Beeckman, Y. Li, Soren Aasmul, Umberto Morbiducci, R. Baets, Pierre Boutouyrie, Filippo Molinari, Nilesh Madhu, Patrick Segers, Template matching and Matrix Profile for Signal Quality Assessment of Carotid and Femoral Laser Doppler Vibrometer Signals, Frontiers in Physiology, 12, p.775052 doi:10.3389/fphys.2021.775052 (2022)  Download this Publication (5.7MB).
  3. Y. Li, P. Segers, J. Dirckx, R. Baets, On-chip laser Doppler vibrometer for arterial pulse wave velocity measurement, Biomedical Optics Express, 4(7), p.1229-1235 doi:10.1364/boe.4.001229 (2013)  Download this Publication (2.8MB).
  4. Y. Li, R. Baets, Homodyne laser Doppler vibrometer on silicon-on-insulator with integrated 90 degree optical hybrids, Optics Express, 21(11), p.13342-13350 doi:10.1364/oe.21.013342 (2013)  Download this Publication (4.1MB).
  5. Y. Li, L. Li, B. Tian, G. Roelkens, R. Baets, Reflectionless tilted grating couplers with improved coupling efficiency based on a silicon overlay, Photonics Technology Letters, 25(13), p.1195-1198 doi:10.1109/LPT.2013.2261484 (2013)  Download this Publication (2.5MB).
  6. Y. Li, S. Verstuyft, G. Yurtsever, S. Keyvaninia, G. Roelkens, D. Van Thourhout, R. Baets, Heterodyne laser Doppler vibrometers integrated on silicon-on-insulator with thermo-optic based frequency shifters, Applied Optics, 52(10), p.2145-2152 doi:10.1364/AO.52.002145 (2013)  Download this Publication (2.6MB).
  7. Y. Li, D. Vermeulen, Y. De Koninck, G. Yurtsever, G. Roelkens, R. Baets, Compact grating couplers on silicon-on-insulator with reduced backreflection, Optics Letters, 37(21), p.4356-4358 doi:10.1364/ol.37.004356 (2012)  Download this Publication (406KB).
  8. Y. Li, S. Meersman, R. Baets, Realization of fiber based laser Doppler vibrometer with serrodyne frequency shifting, Applied Optics, 50(17), p.2809-2814 doi:10.1364/ao.50.002809 (2011)  Download this Publication (404KB).
      International Conferences

    1. E. Dieussaert, R. Baets, Y. Li, Silicon photonics-based Laser Doppler Vibrometer for non-contact photoacoustic sensing, SPIE Photonics West, Belgium, (2023).
    2. E. Dieussaert, R. Baets, Y. Li, Proposal for non-contact photoacoustics using silicon photonics-based Laser Doppler Vibrometers, accepted for publication in Annual Symposium of the IEEE Photonics Society Benelux Chapter, Netherlands,  (to be published).
    3. E. Dieussaert, Y. Li, G. Morthier, R. Baets, Influence of optical amplifiers for on-chip homodyne laser Doppler vibrometers, Journal of Physics: Conference series, 2041, Italy, p.012005 doi:10.1088/1742-6596/2041/1/012005 (2021)  Download this Publication (617KB).
    4. T. Spuesens, Y. Li, P. Verheyen, G. Lepage, S. Balakrishnan, P. Absil, R. Baets, Integrated Optical Frequency Shifter on a Silicon Platform, Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics, OSA Technical Digest (online) (Optical Society of America, 2016), paper SF2G.1., United States, United States, p.paper SF2G.1 doi:10.1364/CLEO_SI.2016.SF2G.1 (2016)  Download this Publication (295KB).
    5. Y. Li, S. Verstuyft, G. Yurtsever, S. Keyvaninia, G. Roelkens, D. Van Thourhout, R. Baets, Miniaturized laser Doppler vibrometers integrated on silicon-on-insulator with thermo-optic serrodyne optical frequency shifter, 9th International Conference on Group IV Photonics, United States, p.219-221 doi:10.1109/group4.2012.6324139 (2012)  Download this Publication (761KB).
    6. Y. Li, R. Baets, Single-channel laser Doppler vibrometers integrated on silicon-on-insulator (SOI), Proceedings of the 5th international conference on optical measurement techniques for structures & systems (OPTIMESS2012), Belgium, p.235 (2012)  Download this Publication (709KB).
    7. Y. Li, D. Vermeulen, Y. De Koninck, G. Yurtsever, G. Roelkens, R. Baets, Fiber couplers for silicon-on-insulator photonic IC's with optimized on-chip return loss, Optical Fiber Communication Conference (OFC) 2012, p.JTh2A.8 (2012)  Download this Publication (931KB).
    8. Y. Li, R. Baets, Improved multi-mode interferometers (MMIs) on silicon-on-insulator with the optimized return loss and isolation, Proceedings of the 2011 annual symposium of the IEEE Photonics Benelux Chapter, p.205-208 (2011)  Download this Publication (155KB).
    9. Y. Li, S. Meersman, R. Baets, Optical frequency shifter on SOI using thermo-optic serrodyne modulation, 2010 7th IEEE International conference on group IV photonics, China, p.75-77 doi:10.1109/group4.2010.5643423 (2010)  Download this Publication (974KB).

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