Directivity and Sensitivity of Fiber-Optic Cable Measuring Ground Motion using a Distributed Acoustic Sensing Array

Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Chelsea Lancelle1, Neal Edward Lord1, Herbert F Wang1, Dante Fratta1, Robert L Nigbor2, Athena Chalari3, Rumen Karaulanov3, Jonathan Alexander Baldwin1 and Ethan Castongia4, (1)University of Wisconsin Madison, Madison, WI, United States, (2)University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, United States, (3)Silixa Ltd., Hertfordshire, United Kingdom, (4)ConocoPhillips Company Anchorage - COP, Anchorage, AK, United States
Distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) is a relatively recent development for measurement of ground motion by using a fiber-optic cable itself as the sensor. In September 2013 a field test was conducted at the NEES@UCSB Garner Valley field site in Southern California incorporating DAS technology. A 762 meter long fiber-optic cable was trenched to a depth of about 0.3 m in a rectangular design with two interior diagonal segments. Existing instruments at the field site include the Garner Valley Downhole Array (GVDA) surface and borehole accelerometers and pore pressure transducers. A PASSCAL seismometer array and four NEES@UCLA tri-axial accelerometers were also deployed along the two interior diagonal segments. These sensors also recorded most of the source events.

One goal of the field test was to study the response of the fiber-optic cable to various vibration sources, including a 45 kN shear shaker and a smaller 450 N portable mass shaker, both of which were available through NEES@UCLA. In addition to the shear sources, signals were recorded from a mini-Vibe source and hammer blows on a steel plate. The focus of this study is on the directivity and the sensitivity of the fiber-optic cable and the distributed acoustic sensor. Preliminary results indicate that the fiber-optic cable is most effective if oriented in the direction of maximum strain. Even with the directional response, signals were recorded throughout the array for different cable orientations at distances up to two-hundred meters. Move-out of different phases could be seen over several meters of traces recorded one-meter apart. Sensitivity of the fiber-optic cable relative to the other instruments is also presented.