Self-assembled fiber Mach-Zehnder interferometer based on liquid crystals
We fabricate a self-assembled fiber Mach-Zehnder interferometer (MZI) based on liquid crystals (LC), which offer a new method for LC/fiber sensors field. The LC is not only acting as a generator of MZI due to its inherent optical anisotropy and optical rotation, but also as a sensing functional material. Compared with traditional fiber MZI techniques, the most remarkable advantage of LC-based fiber MZI is the high sensitivity and versatility without the need for any special fiber configurations. Here, the novel LC-based fiber MZI is firstly demonstrated as a volatile organic compound (VOC) gas sensor. The LC-based fiber MZI possesses features including easy fabrication, low cost, versatility, and super-sensitivity, showing potential application in gas monitoring, liquid detection and biosensors.