The Nanophotonics Lab welcomes our newest group member, Felipe Santos (or Felipinho!). Felipe's research will be focused on investigating the quantum nature of opto-mechanical oscillators.
Synchronization of Micromechanical Oscillators Using Light
Mian Zhang, Gustavo Wiederhecker, Sasikanth Manipatruni, Arthur Barnard, Paul McEuen, and Michal Lipson
Phys. Rev. Lett. 109, 233906 (2012) - cover article.
Synchronization, the emergence of spontaneous order in coupled systems, is of fundamental importance in both physical and biological systems. We demonstrate the synchronization of two dissimilar silicon nitride micromechanical oscillators, that are spaced apart by a few hundred nanometers and are coupled through optical radiation field. The tunability of the optical coupling between the oscillators enables one to externally control the dynamics and switch between coupled and individual oscillation states. These results pave a path towards reconfigurable massive synchronized oscillator networks.
The Nanophotonics Lab welcomes our newest group member, Yovanny Espinel. Yovanny's PhD thesis will focus on optomechanical interaction in waveguides and micro cavities.
Power Insensitive Silicon Microring Resonators
Lian-Wee Luo, Gustavo S. Wiederhecker, Kyle Preston, and Michal Lipson
Opt. Lett. 37, 590-592 (2012) http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OL.37.000590
We demonstrate power insensitive silicon microring resonators without the need for active feedback control. The passive control of the resonance is achieved by utilizing the compensation of two counteracting processes, free carrier dispersion blueshift and thermo-optic redshift. In the fabricated devices, the resonant wavelength shifts less than one resonance linewidth for dropped power up to 335 μW, more than fivefold improvement in cavity energy handling capability compared to regular microrings.
Viewpoint: Seeing the “Quantum” in Quantum Zero-Point Fluctuations
Department of Physics, McGill University, Montréal, Québec H3A 2T8, Canada
Physics, 5, 8 (2012)
A technique from ion spectroscopy reveals the quantum nature of a mechanical system at low temperature.
Quantum zero-point motion, the fluctuation in the position of an object necessitated by the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, is among the most basic of quantum phenomena. While the origin of such fluctuations may be textbook material, unambiguously detecting them in a large mechanical structure (i.e., large compared to atomic scales) and, moreover, detecting their quantum nature, have remained elusive goals. These two tasks have now been accomplished by Amir Safavi-Naeini and co-workers at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. See more
Observation of Quantum Motion of a Nanomechanical Resonator
Amir H. Safavi-Naeini, Jasper Chan, Jeff T. Hill, Thiago P. Mayer Alegre, Alex Krause, and Oskar Painter
Physical Review Letters, 108, 033602 (2012)
See accompanying Physics Viewpoint
In this Letter we use resolved sideband laser cooling to cool a mesoscopic mechanical resonator to near its quantum ground state (phonon occupancy 2.6 +/- 0.2), and observe the motional sidebands generated on a second probe laser. Asymmetry in the sideband amplitudes provides a direct measure of the displacement noise power associated with quantum zero-point ﬂuctuations of the nanomechanical resonator, and allows for an intrinsic calibration of the phonon occupation number.