Novel opto-mechanical devices for nano-manipulation
Optomechanics is an emerging field which focuses on exploring the mechanical effects of light. Optical trapping and manipulation of micro-objects are becoming increasingly important techniques in biotechnology and micro-fabrication due to their non-contact nature and inherent high precision.
Resonant cavity trapping presents a novel solution for nanoparticle manipulation. In a resonant cavity, the optical field is significantly enhanced and thus effectively reduces the power threshold for stable trapping. The cavity environment also facilitates analysis using sensitive cavity-enhanced spectroscopic techniques such as fluorescence or Raman spectroscopy.
In this project, we investigate both theoretically and experimentally novel cavity-enhanced techniques for nanoparticle and molecular manipulation using light. The project will ultimately lead to the Holy Grail of a single-molecule detection platform which combines both sensitive detection as well as nano-scale molecular manipulation capabilities.
(Postdeadline) "Optical Trapping of Nanoparticles in Resonant Cavities: Optical Tweezers with Single Particle Selectivity," Frontiers in Optics, San Jose, CA (2009).
S. Lin, J. Hu, L. C. Kimerling, and K. Crozier, "Design of Nanoslotted Photonic Crystal Waveguide Cavities for Single Nanoparticle Trapping and Detection," Opt. Lett. 34, 3451-3453 (2009).
J. Hu, S. Lin, L. C. Kimerling, and K. Crozier, "Optical trapping of nanoparticles in resonant cavities," submitted to Phys. Rev. A