High-Temperature Shear Stress Instrumentation

DirectShear-Optical™ sensors are robust, high-bandwidth shear stress sensors designed from the ground up for harsh environments, including high-temperature applications.  The sensors employ  purely optical transduction,  a silicon/Pyrex micromachined floating element, and a remote optical fiber readout to enable time-resolved one-dimensional, direct shear stress measurements at high temperatures.  

Like the original DirectShear line of sensors, IC2's DirectShear-Optical sensors are capable of both mean and dynamic measurements of wall shear stress over a wide dynamic range and are offered in a range of sensor models to suit different applications.

The optical sensors are now commercially available and are ideal for precision skin friction measurements in high-speed, high-temperature test facilities.



  • Optical micromachined floating element sensor for time-resolved, one-dimensional, direct shear stress measurements in harsh environments
  • Optical gratings for direct transduction of shear stress with remote optical fiber readout
  • Silicon/Pyrex sensor structure for high-temperature environments (up to 400°C continuous)
  • Optimized Sensor Control Unit (SCU) for high dynamic range and bandwidth
  • Suite of sensor models for different applications


  • Instrumentation-grade skin friction sensing in high temperatures and harsh environments
  • Aerodynamic drag research
  • Detection of flow separation
  • High-speed wind tunnel testing


  • Direct measurement of shear stress
  • Harsh environment capable
  • Non-intrusive - minimal flow disturbance
  • High resolution, dynamic range and bandwidth
  • Immune to EMI

Sensor Head Housing Details

  • Non-intrusive — backside contacts for minimal flow disturbance
  • Standard stainless steel cylindrical housings available with or without shoulder and key alignment and detachable cable
  • Multiple sensor head form factors, materials and finishes available to meet installation requirements.
  • Custom housings/materials available
  • Suite of 6 sensor models available for different applications (see Specifications table)