Insulation aging monitoring is widely used to evaluate the operating condition of power equipment. One important monitoring method is detecting partial discharges (PD). PD is a localized breakdown of dielectric and its characteristics can give information about the insulation aging. Most existing test methods cannot identify different kinds of defects. Also, the practical application of PD detection in most existing test methods is restricted by weak PD signals and strong electric field disturbance from surroundings. In order to monitor aging situation in detail, types of PDs are important features to take into account. To classify different types of PDs, pulse sequence analysis (PSA) method is advocated to analyze PDs in the rod-plane model. This method can reflect cumulative effects of PDs, which are always ignored when only measuring PD value. It also shows uniform characteristics when different kinds of detecting system are utilized. Moreover, it does not need calibration. Analysis results from PSA show highly consistent distribution patterns for the same type of PDs and significant differences in the distribution patterns among types of PDs. Furthermore, a new method to detect PD signals using fiber bragg grating (FBG) based PD sensor is studied in this research. By using a piezoelectric ceramic transducer (PZT), small PD signals can be converted to pressure signal and then converted to an optical wavelength signal with FBG. The optical signal is isolated from the electric field; therefore its attenuation and anti-jamming performance will be better than traditional methods. Two sensors, one with resonant frequency of 42.7 kHz and the other 300 kHz, were used to explore the performance of this testing system. However, there were issues with the sensitivity of the sensors of these devices and the results have been communicated with the company. These devices could not give the results at the same level of accuracy as the conventional methods.