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Fiber Optics

Fiber Light StudyShine a flashlight into one end of the fiber and the light can be seen coming out of the other end. This ability to guide light from one place to another provides many advantages when applied to industrial photoelectric sensing.

Fiber Optic Light Guides are flexible and small enough to fit into difficult sensing sites. This allows the sensor to be located in a more convenient, remote location — out of harm’s way. Fibers are resistant to high temperatures, vibration, condensation, and corrosion.

One of the main advantages of glass fiber optic light guides is that they can be sized and shaped to provide optical advantages. When fiber optic light guides are utilized, they become the optics of the sensing system. At the sensing site, the size and shape of the fiber optic bundle carrying the light controls the size and shape of the transmitted light beam. The size and shape of the fiber optic bundle receiving the light beam controls the effective viewing area of the sensing system.

Lenses are available to provide additional control of the transmitted and received light beams. Both Beam Break and Beam Make sensing modes are adaptable to fiber optic sensing.

Thru-Beam/Opposed Mode

Thru-Beam/Opposed Mode

Retroreflective Mode

Retroreflective Mode

Optical Proximity Mode

Optical Proximity Mode

Convergent "V-Axis" Mode

Convergent

 

1. USING STRAIGHT LIGHT GUIDES
Straight light guides are a bundle of glass fibers, with the same number of glass fibers on both ends.

• Thru-Beam/Opposed Mode Sensing Straight light guides are used in pairs. One light guide is used to transmit the light from the sensor's light source to the sensing site. Here the light beam is focused, or directed across the area the target is to be passing. The receiving light guide is located on the opposite side, aligned in position to receive the light beam. Then this light guide transmits the received light back to the sensor's photo detector. When a target or object passes through the light beam, the sensor responds to the absence of light and switches its output accordingly. This is called Beam Break, or thru-beam sensing.

• Convergent “V” Axis Mode
At times thru-beam and proximity sensing won’t work for a particular application. By using a pair of straight fibers directed at an object in a “V” configuration, a certain part of the object can be detected.

2. USING BIFURCATED LIGHT GUIDES
Bifurcated light guides start out as one bundle of glass fibers. This single bundle is then split into two separate bundles of fibers at the sensor end, and left as one randomly mixed bundle at the sensing end.

• Beam Break Sensing or Retroreflective Mode
The sensing tip of the fiber is placed on one side of the detection path with a reflector on the other. The object passes between the fiber and the reflector, breaking the beam and switching the output of the sensor.

• Beam Make Sensing or Proximity Mode
One half of the fiber transmits the light to the sensing site. The other half transmits the reflecting or diffusing light off the surface of the target back to the sensor's photodetector. This “proximity mode” sensing is used to sense nearby objects.

3. EXPLOSIVE ENVIRONMENTS WARNING
While fiber optics are considered to be intrinsically safe, the sheathing is a hollow tube that could conceivably provide a flame path. Additionally, the photoelectric sensor must be placed into an approved enclosure.

4. LONG FIBERS
Glass fibers absorb 10% of the remaining light for each foot of glass the light travels; 15ft fibers have brighter beams than 20ft fibers, etc. Fibers can be ordered in longer lengths in 12in increments up to 30ft.

5. ROUTING/BEND RADIUS
Avoid sharp bends when routing light guides around machines. A good minimum bend radius is approximately 10 times the jacket diameter.

6. WATERPROOF
Liquid inside the fiber’s protective jacket will lower transmission. Use PVC monocoil jackets in wet locations.

7. REPAIRS
Fiber Optics must never be cut or broken. Never pull on a fiber optic’s protective jacket. They cannot be repaired or spliced. The tips cannot be bent unless specifically noted. They are filled with epoxy, and will break. Abrasion can scratch the face of the fiber optic bundle and lower its performance.

8. CLEANING
Avoid dirt build-up on the bundle face. Clean with filtered air, soap and water, glass cleaners, toothbrushes, etc. Avoid abrasives.

9. FIBER OPTIC LIGHT GUIDES TEMPERATURE RATINGS

GLASS FIBERS (Type 304 stainless steel)

Standard Fibers
Excess heat above the rated temperature damages the epoxy in the tips, or melts the PVC monocoil jacket.

• Flexible Stainless Steel Jacketing
Operating temperatures from -50°F to +525°F (-45°C to +275°C)

• PVC Monocoil Jacketing
Operating temperatures from -40°F to +220°F (-40°C to +105°C)

High Temperature Fibers
On various tests our high temperature fiber optics were subjected to temperatures above 500°C for ten hours, and they held their bonding elements without failure.

• Stainless Steel Jacketing (Type 304)
Operating temperatures from -50°F to +900°F (-45°C to +480°C)

Plastic Fiber Optic Specifications

1. Select mode of sensing best suited to your application, e.g., “straight light guide” for Beam Break/opposed mode sensing, or “bifurcated light guide” for Beam Make/proximity sensing.

2. Determine whether the standard size or the miniature fibers will work best.

3. Select stainless steel armored cable for most applications, including high temperatures, or PVC jacketed monocoil for wet applications.

4. Select fiber optic bundle size and shape that optimize the viewing area and provide the greatest amount of contrast deviation as displayed on the CONTRAST INDICATOR.

5. Select the tip configuration that best fits the sensing needs, such as, right angle, straight, stainless or brass threaded (both 1.5” and .625” lengths), or side view.

6. Use the Glass Fiber Optic Model Number Matrix below to create the model number that matches your selected sensing mode, jacketing, fiber optic bundle, size, and tip configuration.

Plastic Fiber Optic Light Guides
Model numbers for plastic fibers do not fit this matrix. If you have a need for a plastic fiber, look through the Plastic Fiber Tab.

Model Number Matrix

TRI-TRONICS® can produce custom Fiber Optics designed and manufactured to meet your specifications.
For custom Fiber Optics, please contact us.

Glass Fiber Optics

Threaded 1.50" Brass Tip
Brass Threaded
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
J - Ø.027" (0.69mm)
K - .02" x .15" (0.5mm x 3.81mm)
U - .156" (3.96mm)
Straight
F-A-XXTP
F-B-XXTP
F-E-XXTP
F-J-XXTP
F-K-XXTP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXTP
BF-B-XXTP
BF-E-XXTP
BF-J-XXTP
BF-K-XXTP
BF-U-XXTUV
Threaded 0.625" Brass Tip
Brass Threaded
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
J - Ø.027" (0.69mm)
K - .02" x .15" (0.5mm x 3.81mm)
Straight
F-A-XXTLP
F-B-XXTLP
F-E-XXTLP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXTLP
BF-B-XXTLP
BF-E-XXTLP
BF-J-XXTLP
BF-K-XXTLP
Threaded 1.50" Stainless Steel Tip
TS
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
J - Ø.027" (0.69mm)
Straight
F-A-XXTSP
F-B-XXTSP
F-E-XXTSP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXTSP
BF-B-XXTSP
BF-E-XXTSP
BF-J-XXTSP
Threaded 1.50" Brass then
Right Angle Tip

Threaded Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
J - Ø.027" (0.69mm)
K - .02" x .15" (0.5mm x 3.81mm)
Straight
F-A-XXTRP
F-B-XXTRP
F-E-XXTRP
F-J-XXTRP
F-K-XXTRP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXTRP
BF-B-XXTRP
BF-E-XXTRP
BF-J-XXTRP
BF-K-XXTRP
Threaded 0.625" Brass then
Right Angle Tip

Threaded Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
Straight
F-A-XXTLRP
F-B-XXTLRP
F-E-XXTLRP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXTLRP
BF-B-XXTLRP
BF-E-XXTLRP
Threaded 1.50" Stainless Steel then
Right Angle Tip

Threaded Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
Straight
F-A-XXTRSP
F-B-XXTRSP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXTRSP
BF-B-XXTRSP
Threaded 0.625" Stainless Steel then
Right Angle Tip

Threaded Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
Straight
F-A-XXTLRSP
F-E-XXTLRSP
Right Angle then
Threaded 1.50" Brass Tip

Right Angle Threaded
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
J - Ø.027" (0.69mm)
K - .02" x .15" (0.5mm x 3.81mm)
Straight
F-A-XXRTP
F-B-XXRTP
F-E-XXRTP
F-J-XXRTP
F-K-XXRTP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXRTP
BF-B-XXRTP
BF-E-XXRTP
 
BF-K-XXRTP
Right Angle then
Threaded 0.625" Brass Tip

Right Angle Threaded
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
Straight
F-A-XXRTLP
F-B-XXRTLP
F-E-XXRTLP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXRTLP
BF-B-XXRTLP
BF-E-XXRTLP
Right Angle then
Threaded 1.50" Stainless Steel Tip

Right Angle Threaded
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
Straight
 
F-B-XXRTSP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXRTSP
 
0.50" Stainless Steel Barrel Tip
Barrel Tip
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
J - Ø.027" (0.69mm)
K - .02" x .15" (0.5mm x 3.81mm)
Straight
F-A-XXP
F-B-XXAP
F-E-XXAP
F-J-XXAP
F-K-XXP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXP
BF-B-XXAP
BF-E-XXAP
BF-J-XXAP
BF-K-XXP
Right Angle Tip
Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.125" (3.18mm)
B - Ø.062" (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046" (1.17mm)
K - .02" x .15" (0.5mm x 3.81mm)
Straight
F-A-XXRP
F-B-XXARP
F-E-XXARP
F-K-XXRP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXRP
BF-B-XXARP
BF-E-XXARP
BF-K-XXRP
Right Side View Tip
Side View Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.093 (2.36mm)
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046 (1.17mm)
Straight
F-A-XXRSP
F-B-XXRSP
F-E-XXRSP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXRSP
BF-B-XXRSP
BF-E-XXRSP
Right Side View then
1.50" Threaded Brass Tip

Side View Right Angle Threaded
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.093 (2.36mm)
Straight
F-A-XXRSTP
Bifurcated
BF-A-XXRSTP
1" Needle Tip
Needle Tip
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046 (1.17mm)
H - Ø.015 (0.38mm)
J - Ø.027 (0.69mm)
Straight
F-B-XXP
F-E-XXP
F-H-XXP
F-J-XXP
Bifurcated
BF-B-XXP
BF-E-XXP
 
BF-J-XXP
Right Angle Needle Tip
Right Angle Needle
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046 (1.17mm)
H - Ø.015 (0.38mm)
J - Ø.027 (0.69mm)
Straight
F-B-XXRP
F-E-XXRP
F-H-XXRP
F-J-XXRP
Bifurcated
BF-B-XXRP
BF-E-XXRP
 
BF-J-XXRP
2" wide Rectangular Flat Housing
Rectangular 2in Flat Housing
Bundle Bundle Size:
P - 0.01in x 1.5in (0.25mm x 38.1mm)
Straight
F-P-XXP
Bifurcated
BF-P-XXP
0.75" wide Rectangular Flat Housing
Rectangular Flat Housing
Bundle Bundle Size:
C - 0.032in x 0.38in (0.81mm x 9.65mm)
Straight
F-C-XXP
Bifurcated
BF-C-XXP
3" Long Bendable Needle Tip
Bendable Needle
Bundle Bundle Size:
L - Ø.057 (1.45mm)
Straight
F-L-XXBP
Bifurcated
BF-L-XXBP
Sensor Adaptor, Bendable 3" Tip For use with F1 Optical Block
Sensor Adaptor for Bendable 3in Tip
  BF-L-3B
Miniature 0.75" Threaded Brass Tip
Mini Threaded Tip
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
Straight
MF-B-XXTP
Bifurcated
MBF-B-XXTP
Miniature Needle Tip
Mini Needle Tip
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
E - Ø.046 (1.17mm)
J - Ø.027 (0.69mm)
Straight
MF-B-XXP
MF-E-XXP
MF-J-XXP
Bifurcated
MBF-B-XXP
MBF-E-XXP
MBF-J-XXP
Miniature 0.75" Threaded Brass then
Right Angle Tip

Mini Threaded Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
Straight
MF-B-XXTRP
Bifurcated
MBF-B-XXTRP
Miniature Right Angle then
0.75" Threaded Brass Tip

Mini Right Angle then Threaded
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
Straight
MF-B-XXRTP
Bifurcated
MBF-B-XXRTP
Miniature Threaded M4 Stainless Steel Tip
Mini Threaded Tip - TM4
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
Straight
MF-B-XXTM4P
Bifurcated
MBF-B-XXTM4P
Miniature Threaded M6 Stainless Steel Tip
Mini Threaded Tip - TM6
Bundle Bundle Size:
A - Ø.090 (2.29mm)
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
Straight
MF-A-XXTM6P
MF-B-XXTM6P
Bifurcated
MBF-A-XXTM6P
MBF-B-XXTM6P
Miniature Right Side View Tip
Mini Side View, Right Angle
Bundle Bundle Size:
B - Ø.062 (1.57mm)
Straight
MF-B-XXRSP
Bifurcated
MBF-B-XXRSP
Miniature 0.5" Rectangular Flat Housing
Mini .5 Rectangular Flat Housing
Bundle Bundle Size:
C - .125 (3.18mm)
Straight
MF-C-XXP
Bifurcated
MBF-C-XXP

Construction

Core – Thin plastic center of the fiber through which light travels.

Jacket – Layer around plastic fiber to protect from damage and moisture. 

Multi-core High-Flex plastic fiber differ from conventional plastic fibers in having multiple independent cores. This configuration allows a bending radius as small as 2mm. They can be bent with no reduction of light transmission. They can be threaded through machinery without the problems associated with extreme vibrations or pulling.

 Fiber Construction

Model Number Matrix

This Matrix does not include all possible plastic fibers.
For custom Fiber Optics, please contact us. 

Plastic Fiber Optics

Threaded Straight Head
Plastic Threaded
Thread Size:
T6 - M6
T4 - M4
T3 - M3
Core Size:
Z - Ø0.04in (1.0mm)
Q - Ø0.02in (0.5mm)
Y - Ø0.01in (0.25mm)

Single/Thru-Beam
PF-Z-78T6
PF-Z-78T4

PF-Q-78T4
PF-Z-78T3
PF-Q-78T3
PF-Y-78T3

Diplex/Reflective
PFD-Z-78T6
PFD-Q-78T6

PFD-Z-78T4
PFD-Q-78T4

Threaded Right Angle Head
Plastic Threaded
Thread Size:
T6 - M6
T4 - M4
Core Size:
Z - Ø0.04in (1.0mm)
Q - Ø0.02in (0.5mm)
Single/Thru-Beam
FPF-Z-78RT4 - High Flex
Diplex/Reflective
FPFD-Z-78RT6 - High Flex
Threaded Straight Head - Coaxial
Plastic Threaded- Coaxial
Thread Size:
T6 - M6
T4 - M4
Emmitter Core Size:
CZ - Ø0.04in (1.0mm)
CQ - Ø0.02in (0.5mm)

Coaxial
coaxial core shape view

Diplex/Reflective
PFD-CZ-78T6 - Coaxial
PFD-CQ-78T4 - Coaxial

Threaded Right Angle Head - Coaxial
Plastic Threaded- Coaxial
Thread Size:
T6 - M6
T4 - M4
Emmitter Core Size:
CZ - Ø0.04in (1.0mm)
CQ - Ø0.02in (0.5mm)

Coaxial
coaxial core shape view

Diplex/Reflective
PFD-CZ-78RT4 - Coaxial

Special Purpose Plastic Fiber Optics

Through-Beam

M4 Threaded Head with
Internal Extended Range Lens
Threaded with Internal Lens
Extended Range Core Size:
Ø1.0mm
Thru-Beam
PF-ZLR-78T4
Slip-On 3/8in Threaded Barrel Head
Slip-on Threaded Barrel Lens
Extended Range Core Size:
Ø1.0mm

Thru-Beam
LF-H-36
LF-H-72
LF-H-120

LF-H-144

Side View Long Range Lens
with Rectangular Intergraded Bracket
Threaded with Internal Lens
Extended Range Core Size:
Ø1.0mm
Thru-Beam
PF-SV-78
Slot Head 5mm Gap
Slot Head 5mm Gap
Slot Gap:
5mm
Core Size:
Ø0.5mm
Thru-Beam
PF-G-41
Slot Head 12mm Gap Array
with Intergraded Bracket

Plastic Array Fiber
Array View Window:
5mm
Core Size:
16x Ø0.25mm
Thru-Beam
PF-G1220-78
Light Array 11mm
with Intergraded Bracket
Slot Head 5mm Gap
Array View Window
11mm
Core Size:
16x Ø0.25mm
Thru-Beam
PF-LA11-78
Light Array 40mm Array
with Intergraded Bracket

Plastic Array Fiber
Array View Window:
40mm
Core Size:
34x Ø0.25mm
Thru-Beam
PF-LA40-78
Light Array 100mm
with Intergraded Bracket
Slot Head 5mm Gap
Array View Window
100mm
Core Size:
34x Ø0.25mm
Thru-Beam
PF-LA100-78

Reflective

Light Array 10.5mm
with 45° Ang
le Intergraded Bracket
Threaded with Internal Lens
Array View Window
10.5mm
Core Size:
16x Ø0.25mm
Reflective
PFD-LA10-78R
Light Array 3mm
with Intergraded Bracket
3mmArray
Array View Window
3mm
Core Size:
9x Ø0.25mm
Reflective
PFD-LA3-78
V-Axis
Convergent Proximity View 8mm
with Intergraded Bracket
8mm Proximity
Focal Point
8mm
Core Size:
Ø0.5mm
Reflective
PFD-CV8-78
Foreground and
Background Surpression
Liquid Level Optical Detection
with Intergraded Bracket

Liquid Level Detection
Tube Sizes
Ø3 - 12mm
Core Size:
Ø0.5mm
Reflective
PFD-LLO312-78
Liquid Level Detection Tube App
Liquid Level Mechanical Detection
Liquid Level Detection
Thread Size:
T8 - M8
Core Size:
Ø0.5mm
Reflective
PFD-ZLLM-78T8

Usable Temps up to
200°C / 392°F
Liquid Level Detection