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Advances in Civil Engineering
Volume 2010, Article ID 638967, 9 pages
Research Article

Casing Pipe Damage Detection with Optical Fiber Sensors: A Case Study in Oil Well Constructions

1School of Civil Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, Heilongjiang 150090, China
2Center for Infrastructure Engineering Studies, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO 65409-0710, USA

Received 14 October 2009; Accepted 2 December 2009

Academic Editor: Jinying Zhu

Copyright © 2010 Zhi Zhou et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Casing pipes in oil well constructions may suddenly buckle inward as their inside and outside hydrostatic pressure difference increases. For the safety of construction workers and the steady development of oil industries, it is critically important to measure the stress state of a casing pipe. This study develops a rugged, real-time monitoring, and warning system that combines the distributed Brillouin Scattering Time Domain Reflectometry (BOTDR) and the discrete fiber Bragg grating (FBG) measurement. The BOTDR optical fiber sensors were embedded with no optical fiber splice joints in a fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) rebar and the FBG sensors were wrapped in epoxy resins and glass clothes, both installed during the segmental construction of casing pipes. In situ tests indicate that the proposed sensing system and installation technique can survive the downhole driving process of casing pipes, withstand a harsh service environment, and remain intact with the casing pipes for compatible strain measurements. The relative error of the measured strains between the distributed and discrete sensors is less than 12%. The FBG sensors successfully measured the maximum horizontal principal stress with a relative error of 6.7% in comparison with a cross multipole array acoustic instrument.