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1. (WO2019068052) LOW LOSS OPTICAL MONITORS, OPTICAL MONITOR ARRAYS AND OPTICAL MONITOR PATCH-PANELS
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CLAIMS

I claim

1. An optical power monitor comprising:

at least one optical fiber with a lossy junction along its length and with a lengthwise cladding having a given index of refraction;

transparent optical cement with index of refraction equal to or greater than that of the optical fiber cladding, positioned in contact with a selected side surface of said cladding, the optical cement being configured in a particular shape encompassing the lossy junction at the selected side thereof; and

a photodiode body proximate the lossy junction on the side opposite the partial dome shape, wherein

the particular shape directs a significant fraction of light from the lossy junction onto said photodiode body.

2. The optical power monitor of claim 1, wherein the particular shape comprises a partial dome shape.

3. The optical power monitor of claims 1 or 2, the particular shape directs a significant fraction of light from the lossy junction onto said photodiode body through internal reflection.

4. The optical power monitor of claims 1 or 2, wherein the

transparent optical cement is positioned in contact with the selected side surface of said cladding for a length of at least 0.5 mm.

5. The optical power monitor of claims 1 or 2, wherein the optical fiber has a single cladding.

6. The optical power monitor of claims 1 or 2, wherein the particular shape is covered with a highly reflective coating.

7. The optical power monitor of claim 6, wherein the highly reflective coating is a gold coating or titanium white paint.

8. The optical power monitor of claims 1 or 2, wherein the lossy junction is fusion spliced.

9. The optical power monitor of claims 1 or 2, wherein the lossy junction is the interface between two optical fibers having different mode field diameters.

10. The optical power monitor of claims 1 or 2, wherein the photodiode has an active area with a length is at least 8 times the fiber cladding diameter.

11. A device to couple light out of an optical fiber cladding and onto a photodiode adjacent the optical fiber, the device comprising:

a shaped optical polymer body with an index of refraction higher than that of the optical fiber cladding, the body having a surface within 10 degrees of the normal to the longitudinal optical axis of the optical fiber.

12. The device of claim 11, wherein the optical polymer body comprises a partial dome shape.

13. The device of claim 11 or 12, wherein the photodiode is closely adjacent the optical fiber.

14. The device of claims 11 or 12, further comprising a reflective coating or paint applied to a top surface of the optical polymer body.

15. The device of claim 14, further comprising a transparent cover to the shaped optical polymer body having an index of refraction less than or equal to 1.4.

16. A low loss power monitor device for an optical fiber light transmission system comprising:

a length of optical fiber transferring an optical signal within a core and cladding geometry, said length comprising serial segments engaged end to end by a lossy junction, wherein a fraction of the signal energy is deflected laterally thereat;

a dome segment of higher index of refraction material than the optical fiber core encompassing the length of optical fiber including the lossy coupling on one side thereof and having a convex reflective surface positioned to reflect light from the lossy coupling back toward the second side of the fiber length; and a photodiode body positioned on the second side of the dome segment in contact with the span of fiber including the lossy junction and responsive to the light fraction reflected from the dome segment.

17. The power monitor device of claim 16, wherein the segment comprises a dome segment.

18. The power monitor device as set forth in claim 16, wherein the lossy junction is a fusion device and the reflected light fraction loss is in the range of O.l dB to 1.0 dB.

19. The power monitor device as set forth in claims 16 or 18, wherein the segment has a bottom coextensive with a linear portion of the optical fiber length, and is in planar engagement with the adjacent photodiode body.

20. The power monitor device as set forth in claim 19, wherein the segment has a substantially flat bottom.

21. The power monitor device as set forth in claims 16 or 18, wherein the device comprises a highly reflective coating over the convex upper surface of the segment.

22. The power monitor device as set forth in claim 16 or 18, wherein the segment comprises a UV cure optical cement and has a curvature providing relatively large angles of incidence for light internally reflected toward the photodiode.

23. A multi-channel optical system for ascertaining an operative status of individual optical circuits in a given multiplicity of different optical fiber circuits arranged in separated control paths, the system comprising:

separate individual signal extracting devices in each of said control paths, in separated segments of optical fibers, each fiber having a separate core junction excision laterally emitting less than above 1% of the signal conveyed along the fiber, each signal extracting device including an emission responsive photodiode body adjacent the junction on one side thereof, and photo-reflective means substantially encompassing the remainder of the junction and directing the laterally emitted signal onto the photodiode; and

an optical signal multiplexer having at least one output and multiple inputs, each input separately receiving the signal input from a different one of the photodiodes, wherein absence of a signal in a control path indicates transmission failure.

24. The system of claim 23, wherein the control paths comprise separated parallel control paths.

25. The system of claims 23 or 24, wherein the segments of optical fibers are laterally separated.

26. The system of claim 25, wherein the segments of optical fibers are laterally separated substantially parallel segments.

27. The system of claims 23 or 24, wherein the photo-reflective means comprises optical cement being configured in a particular shape.

28. The system of claim 27, wherein the particular shape comprises a partial dome shape.

29. The system of claim 28, wherein the particular shape is covered with a highly reflective coating.

30. The system of claim 29, wherein the highly reflective coating is a gold coating or titanium white paint.

31. The system of claims 23 or 24, wherein the photo-reflective means comprises an optical energy reflector.

32. The system of claim 23 or 24, wherein the signal extracting devices comprise junctions between opposed optical fiber segment ends of less than 5 mm in length.

33. The system of claim 32, wherein the body enveloping each lateral junction is less than about 20 mm3 in volume.

34. The system of claim 33, wherein the body enveloping each lateral junction comprises a higher refractive index on one side of the junction and a signal detecting photodiode on the other side of the junction.

35. The system of claim 23, wherein the optical system further comprises a scanning system responsive to the signal multiplexer for and providing de-multiplexed output signals indicating the amplitudes of the individual signals from the different photodiodes.

36. The system of claim 23, wherein the multiplexer has a single output.

37. The system of claims 23 or 24, wherein the optical system further comprises a scanning system responsive to the signal multiplexer providing de- multiplexed output signals indicating amplitudes of the individual signals from the different photodiodes.

38. A circuit system for continuously monitoring power levels in individual ones of a plurality of optical fiber channels disposed in multi-channel sets, the system comprising:

a variable plurality of optical signal sensors, each positioned individually in a different one of the optical fiber channels, each signal sensor comprising a core discontinuity between abutting ends of paired optical fibers, each said discontinuity introducing less than about 1.0 dB of energy leakage loss in the signal being transmitted in the fiber, the signal sensors each also including individual optical energy reflectors spanning the core discontinuity on one lateral side of the fiber, and a signal detector spanning the core discontinuity on the opposite lateral side thereof to sense optical energy leaked therefrom; the multi-channel sets being substantially alike in number;

a plurality of different energy leakage signaling circuits, each coupled and responsive to the signals emanating from the separate sensors of a different one of the multi-channel sets and a scanner to serially scan the multiple sensors of the associated set to output the then-existing signal levels in the associated sets, each of the signaling circuits including a multiplexor to multiplex the sensors in the multi-channel sets; and

a processor system coupled to control the scanning of the signaling circuits and to process one output from the sensing circuits.

39. The system of claim 38, wherein the discontinuities along the fiber lengths each further comprise volumes defined by dome-shaped optical reflectors individually spanning one side of the core discontinuity and wherein said optical reflectors have a higher index of refraction within their dome-shaped volumes than the optical fiber claddings, and the signal detectors each comprise a photodiode body providing an output signal responsive to the loss at the discontinuity.