OptaSense Collaborates with Leading Research Institution to Install Fiber Optic Seismic Array

October 19th, 2016

OptaSense, a QinetiQ company, announces a collaborative research agreement with the Stanford School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences that includes the installation of an on-campus fiber optic seismic array.

Using OptaSense distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) technology to sense ambient noise and seismic energy, the seismic array will enable scientists to conduct research in passive seismology. Located adjacent to a major geologic fault zone, the San Andreas Fault, the seismic array will be used to image subsurface properties that provide scientists a better understanding of the complex geology in the Bay Area.

The seismic array will leverage a two kilometer long, standard telecommunications fiber optic cable. The OptaSense DAS system will transform this fiber into thousands of distributed sensors capable of detecting changes in pressure, temperature and strain. A single fiber can create a seismic array with thousands of channels, allowing for dense sampling of seismic wavefields and the ability to detect weak signals.

Utilizing a Coherent Optical Time Domain Reflectometer, or Interrogator Unit (IU), the OptaSense system sends laser pulses down the length of the fiber to measure and observe changes in the backscattered light, indicating movement in the earth adjacent to the fiber.

In addition to enabling research in seismology, the OptaSense DAS system will support potential studies in fields such as structural engineering, communications, infrastructure monitoring, and security.

“Collaborating with one of the world’s foremost academic institutions is particularly exciting for OptaSense. For the first time, we are putting our DAS technology into the hands of the academic community and working with them to explore new applications and techniques. Through this collaboration we will be able to mature the understanding and expand the capabilities of DAS for the benefit of the wider seismic community,” commented David Hill, Chief Technology Officer at OptaSense.


For further information

About OptaSense

OptaSense, a QinetiQ company, is the trusted partner for Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) solutions that reduce the cost of asset ownership.  Our leading edge technology promotes cost savings by empowering decision makers with real-time, actionable intelligence to effectively operate, produce, transport and protect high-value assets, while mitigating risk.

OptaSense strives to continuously pioneer DAS solutions that optimize efficiency, reliability and safety across multiple industries, including oil and gas, defense, security, transport and utilities. Our solutions are flexible, providing a single system with multiple capabilities customized to meet project demands.

Operating in over 50 countries with more than 25,000km of assets under contract, OptaSense is now monitoring and protecting some of the world’s most valuable assets.

For more information about OptaSense visit us online at www.optasense.com.


About QinetiQ

A FTSE250 company, QinetiQ uses its world-class knowledge, research and innovation to provide high-end technical expertise and advice, to customers in the global aerospace, defense and security markets. QinetiQ’s unique position enables it to be a trusted partner to government organizations, predominantly in the UK and the US, including defense departments as well as other international customers in targeted sectors.

Follow us on twitter @QinetiQ or visit our blog www.qinetiq-blogs.com

For further information please contact:

  • QinetiQ Press Office – pressoffice@qinetiq.com / +44 (0) 1252 39 3500
  • Rebecca Mitchell, Maitland – rmitchell@maitland.co.uk/ +44 (0)207 379 5151

Notes for Editors

About OptaSense

  • OptaSense is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the QinetiQ Group
  • It is a platform technology which has applications in a number of markets, including infrastructure security where the technology is already in use to monitor 13,000kms of assets, principally providing leak detection and third party intrusion detection for oil and gas pipelines.
  • OptaSense is the world leader in Distributed Acoustic Sensing and operating in 40 countries globally with operations across multiple industries including Oil & Gas, Defence & Security, Transport and Utilities.
  • Website: www.optasense.com 

About QinetiQ

  • A FTSE250 company, QinetiQ uses its domain knowledge to provide technical support and know-how to customers in the global aerospace, defence and security markets. QinetiQ's unique position enables it to be a trusted partner to government organisations, predominantly in the UK and the US, including defence departments, intelligence services and security agencies.
  • Follow QinetiQ on twitter @QinetiQ
  • Website: www.qinetiq.com