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About Us

FOSA is a non-profit organization created in Washington DC in 2017 with the mission of educating industry, government and the public on the benefits of fiber optic sensing. Through webinars, videos, white papers, public presentations and public policy advocacy, the organization provides information on the use of fiber optic sensing to secure critical facilities, enhance public safety and protect the environment.

Fiber optic sensing can be deployed to continuously monitor vehicle movement, human traffic, digging activity, seismic activity, temperatures, structural integrity, liquid and gas leaks, and many other conditions and activities. It is used around the world to monitor power stations, telecom networks, railways, roads, bridges, international borders, and critical infrastructure, terrestrial and subsea power and pipelines, and downhole applications in oil, gas and enhanced geothermal electricity generation. Fiber optic sensing is not constrained by line of sight or remote power access and, depending on system configuration, can be deployed in continuous lengths exceeding 30 miles with detection at every point along its path. Cost per sensing point over great distances cannot be matched by competing technologies and often existing deployed fibers can be utilized.

Fiber optic sensing works by measuring changes in the "backscattering" of light occurring in an optical fiber when the fiber encounters vibration, strain or temperature change. The fiber serves as sensor over its entire length, delivering real time information on physical surroundings and security and pinpointing the precise location of events and conditions occurring at or near the sensor cable.

FOSA membership is open to organizations which manufacture, install, support and use fiber optic sensing systems and equipment.

The Fiber Optic Sensing Association is affiliated with the not for profit Fiber Broadband Association, which provides education on the benefits of fiber optic networks and seeks to advance the deployment and utilization of fiber optic networks for multiple purposes, including sensing, telecommunications, Internet, and SCADA.

Our Mission

The Fiber Optic Sensing Association's mission is to educate industry, government and the public on the benefits of using advanced optical fiber based sensing technologies to enhance public safety, promote security of critical facilities and infrastructure, and protect the environment.

Our Vision

To be the voice of the fiber optic sensing sector and the source of information for all interested parties.

Our Board of Directors

Mike Hines, OFS (Chairman)

John J. Williams, OptaSense (Vice Chairman)

Gordon Youle, OZ Optics (Treasurer)

Paul Baird, Prysmian (Secretary)

Stan Fendley, Corning

Steve Seabolt, Ditch Witch

Kent Wardley, Fotech Solutions

Vivek Caroli, Frauscher Sensor Technology USA, Inc.

Etienne Rochat, Omnisens

Lisa Youngers, Fiber Broadband Association

Scott Jackson, Fiber Broadband Association

Additional Resources

Download now FOSA Charter

Download now FOSA Antitrust Guidelines 

Our History

FOSA was launched in 2017 by twelve companies involved in the provision of fiber optic sensing equipment and services: AFL, Corning, Ditch Witch, Dura-Line, Fotech Solutions, Frauscher Sensor Technology USA, Inc., Integrated Roadways, OFS, Omnisens, OptaSense, OZ Optics, and Prysmian.  FOSA elected to affiliate with the Fiber Broadband Association (FBA), which provided great assistance in founding the new organization.  Members of FOSA’s founding Board of Directors were Stan Fendley, Corning (Chairman); Mike Hines, OFS (Vice Chairman); John Williams, OptaSense (Secretary); Steve Seabolt, Ditch Witch (Treasurer); Kent Wardley, Fotech Solutions; Vivek Caroli, Frauscher Sensor Technologies USA, Inc.; Marc Nikles, Omnisens; Gordon Youle, OZ Optics; Steve Szymanski, Prysmian; Heather Burnett Gold, FBA; and Scott Jackson, FBA.  Shortly after the launch of FOSA, Adelos, AP Sensing, NKT Photonics, Hifi Engineering and Network Integrity Systems added their names to the membership list.

The first committee to be formed within FOSA was the Technology Committee, which, under the chairmanship of Dr. Chris Minto of OptaSense, took on a number of important tasks including writing 1-page primers on various aspects of distributed fiber optic sensing (DFOS), as well as “DFOS Installation Considerations” for pipelines, railways and other applications.   In 2018, a special Working Group of the Technology Committee was formed under the leadership of AP Sensing’s Gareth Lees to investigate the need for and support for a Pipeline Safety Test Facility to support the North American market.  That working group developed a questionnaire to obtain the views of knowledgeable people in the field, including pipeline operators, oilfield services companies, fiber optic sensing equipment providers, and non-profit testing organizations. Based on responses to the questionnaire, the Working Group then developed a Concept Paper, which attempted to visualize a facility which would meet the criteria voiced by respondents.  That Concept Paper, and the Questionnaire Responses themselves, were shared with industry leaders and government officials in order to spur a conversation regarding the proposed Pipeline Safety Test Facility.   

Other committees formed included:

  • Marketing Committee was formed under the chairmanship of Laura Falcon of Frauscher Sensor Technologies USA, Inc.
  • Economic Justification Committee, under the chairmanship of Greg McElyea of AP Sensing; and
  • the Public Policy Committee, under the chairmanship of Stan Fendey of Corning.

In December 2017, Mike Hines of OFS succeeded Stan Fendley as FOSA Chairman, John Williams of OptaSense was elected Vice Chairman, Gordon Youle of OZ Optics was elected Treasurer, and newly-elected board member Greg Williams of Prysmian became Secretary.  Geoffroy Lacoin of Omnisens, first appointed to the Board in the fall of 2017 to replace Marc Nickles, and Vivek Caroli of Frauscher Sensor Technologies USA, Inc., were reelected to the Board.