Distributed temperature sensing


LIOS Technology is the global leader in the development and supply of state of the art frequency domain based distributed temperature monitoring systems. The LIOS DTS product line comprises a range of real-time fiber optic based linear temperature measuring devices

Distributed Temperature Sensing Systems (DTS) are optoelectronic devices which measure temperatures by means of optical fibres functioning as linear sensors.

Temperatures are recorded along the optical sensor cable, thus not at points, but as a continuous profile. A high accuracy of temperature determination is achieved over great distances.


  • DTS on Power Cable
  • DTS on Transmission Lines
  • Fire Detection in Road and Rail Tunnels
  • Oil and Gas
  • Leak detection on pipelines
  • Temperature monitoring of furnaces

Measuring Principle – Raman Effect

Physical measurement dimensions, such as temperature or pressure and tensile forces, can affect glass fibres and locally change the characteristics of light transmission in the fibre. As a result of the attenuation of the light in the quartz glass fibres through scattering, the location of an external physical effect can be determined so that the optical fibre can be employed as a linear sensor.

Optical fibres are made from doped quartz glass. Quartz glass is a form of silicon dioxide (SiO2) with amorphous solid structure. Thermal effects induce lattice oscillations within the solid. When light falls onto these thermally excited molecular oscillations, an interaction occurs between the light particles (photons) and the electrons of the molecule. Light scattering, also known as Raman scattering, occurs in the optical fibre. Unlike incident light, this scattered light undergoes a spectral shift by an amount equivalent to the resonance frequency of the lattice oscillation.

The light scattered back from the fibre optic therefore contains three different spectral shares:

  • The Rayleigh scattering with the wavelength of the laser source used
  • The Stokes line components with the higher wavelength in which photons are generated
  • The Anti-Stokes line components with a lower wavelength than the Rayleigh scattering, in which photons are destroyed

The intensity of the so-called Anti-Stokes band is temperature-dependent, while the so-called Stokes band is practically independent of temperature. The local temperature of the optical fibre is derived from the ratio of the Anti-Stokes and Stokes light intensities.

Measuring Principle – OFDR Technology

Latest Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS) evaluation units deploy the method of Optical Frequency

Domain Reflectometry (OFDR)

The OFDR system provides information on the local characteristic when the backscatter signal detected during the entire measurement time is measured as a function of frequency in a complex fashion, and then subjected to Fourier transformation. The essential benefits of OFDR technology are the quasi continuous wave mode employed by the laser and the narrow-band detection of the optical back scatter signal, whereby a significantly higher signal to noise ratio is achieved than with conventional pulse technology (OTDR). This technical benefit allows the use of affordable semiconductor laser diodes and electronic assemblies for signal averaging.

The optical frequency domain reflectometry has been developed as a high-resolution measurement process for the characterisation of optical wave guides with length dimensions of just a few millimetres. In contrast, its application for the Raman backscatter measurement was introduced and patented by the company LIOS Technology.