Modular SmartScan

A SmartScan variant that offers greater channel capacity and wavelength range than the standard SmartScan model, for applications with higher FBG numbers.

Modular SmartScan has been developed in response to demand from many clients seeking the same SmartScan performance and value for money but with greater capacity. Modular SmartScan is offered in a 19 inch rack format with all connections rear mounted for easy inclusion in instrumentation racks.

Why Choose a Smart Fibres Interrogator?

  • 8, 12 or 16 optical channels
  • 40 or 80 nm bandwidth
  • Solid state
  • Rack mount enclosure
  • Multiple interface options

Related Products

FBG Interrogator

SmartScan SBI

FBG Sensors


Related FAQs

FAQ. What is the warranty period for Smart Fibres' interrogators?

All of our fibre optic interrogators come with a standard one year warranty. This warranty can be increased on a year by year basis. Extended warranty is available at the time of initial purchase on request.

FAQ. Can the acquisition system make a measurement at a fast scan rate and then average these values over a longer time period?

Yes, SmartSoft software has the functionality for the user to set both the scan rate and averaging rate. This will reduce the number of data points being logged to file.

FAQ. Can I increase the SmartScan scan rate higher than 2.5 kHz?

Yes, the scan rate is user definable in the SmartSoft software. Table below gives an indication of the scan rates available:

Scan Rate
(All channels simultaneously)
Scan Bandwidth

2.5 kHz

40 nm

5 kHz

20 nm

10 kHz

10 nm



FAQ. Can SmartScan synchronise to a National Time Protocol (NTP) server?

SmartScan can synchronise to a NTP time signal via its Ethernet port. 

In this scenario SmartScan would need to be connected on a Local Area Network (LAN) and would also need to be able to access an NTP server, either on the same LAN or over the Internet.

All the data from SmartScan is time stamped, so if an NTP signal is received the timestamps would be synchronised to that signal. See “Plug-in for NTP synchronisation” in the SmartSoft user manual.

FAQ. Is data averaging done on the instrument itself?

No on-board averaging is done. Averaging is done in SmartSoft on the PC connected to the instrument.

FAQ. Can I synchronise SmartScan data with data from other types of measurement system?

All data from SmartScan is transmitted with a Universal Time Coordinated (UTC) time stamp. The SmartScan’s UTC time is synchronised with the host PC’s clock every time SmartSoft connects to the interrogator. Therefore SmartScan data can be synchronised with time stamped data from other measurement systems.

FAQ. Can you recommend a PC specification for use with Smart Fibres' interrogators?

Generally speaking the faster the processor speed and the newer the processor technology the more likely it is to cope with the speed of data. Nearly all new off-the-shelf laptops and desktops would be fast enough, and these typically have an i3 with a processor speed of 2 GHz or better. Older desktops with Intel Duo ~3 GHz processors are also fast enough.

FAQ. What software is supplied with an FBG interrogator?

All of our interrogators are supplied with our standard SmartSoft suite of LabVIEW based applications.

For further information about SmartSoft please visit our SmartSoft Software Product Page via the below link.

For options about customising the software, please refer to our further FAQ below.

FAQ. Why do you recommend using an FBG with a >0.5 nm FWHM for SmartScan instruments?

The algorithm embedded in the SmartScan needs several laser tuning points to overlap the reflection shape of the FBG. In order to achieve a non-linearity error compatible with the SmartScan Specifications, we recommend to use FBG with an FWHM between 0.5 and 1 nm.

Narrower FBGs can be used, at the expense of reduced linearity.

Please Email Technical Support or call +44 1344 484111 if you need more help on this point.

FAQ. Is it possible to upgrade the sensor capacity on the Modular SmartScan by increasing the number of channels?

Yes, the Modular SmartScan architecture is designed so that the user can increase the number of channels to 8, 12 or 16 by adding additional modules. Please contact us for upgrade options available.

FAQ. Is it possible to check or change the IP address of the instrument via a RS232 connection?

Yes. Please contact us at Email Technical Support or call +44 1344 484111 for the connection procedure and assistance.

FAQ. How do I calculate which wavelength to use for my FBGs to maximise the number of sensors on a particular channel?

Smart Fibres has created a wavelength budget calculation tool for FBG wavelength selection.

Please Email Us or call +44 1344 484111 with details of your application and we can help you create a wavelength budget.

FAQ. How many optical splitter/combiners can be used in a single channel?

Our instruments have a dynamic range of 27 dB optical power. The table below gives a rough estimate of each device’s loss. 

When using low reflectivity FBGs such as drawtower gratings the optical power budget is reduced from 27 dB to 11 dB.

DeviceOptical loss

1 x 2 coupler


1 x 4 coupler


1 x 8 coupler


FC/APC Uniter


FAQ. Can a SmartScan FBG interrogator be operated as a standalone datalogger?

Yes, any SmartScan interrogator can initially be configured with a PC and then disconnected to log the measurement data to a USB solid state storage device or, in the case of SmartScan Aero Mini, it's onboard flash memory.

FAQ. What communications protocol options are available for Smart Fibres interrogators?

For data transmission we can offer Ethernet, CANopen, Modbus/TCP, Modbus/RTU and Profibus DP but not all are available on all our interrogator models.

Please note that some communications protocols will limit the acquisition rates of the instrument, e.g., CANopen is up to 250Hz.

FAQ. Can we connect to the RS232 port for live measurement data?

No, the RS232 port is only used for diagnostics connection.