Broadband all-photonic transduction of nanocantilevers

Mo Li, W. H.P. Pernice, H. X. Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

124 Scopus citations


Nanoelectromechanical systems based on cantilevers have consistently set records for sensitivity in measurements of displacement, force and mass over the past decade. Continued progress will require the integration of efficient transduction on a chip so that nanoelectromechanical systems may be operated at higher speeds and sensitivities. Conventional electrical schemes have limited bandwidth, and although optical methods are fast, they are subject to the diffraction limit. Here, we demonstrate the integration of nanocantilevers on a silicon photonic platform with a non-interferometric transduction scheme that avoids the diffraction limit by making use of near-field effects in optomechanical interactions. The use of a non-interferometric method means that a coherent light source is not required, making the monolithic integration of optomechanical systems with on-chip light sources feasible. We further demonstrate optomechanical multiplexing of an array of ten nanocantilevers with a displacement sensitivity of 40fmHz 1/2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)377-382
Number of pages6
JournalNature Nanotechnology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2009

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
H.X.T. acknowledges a career award from National Science Foundation (NSF). W.H.P.P. acknowledges support from the Alexander-von-Humboldt postdoctoral fellowship programmes. The authors thank M. Hochberg and T. Baehr-Jones for help with the design of the grating couplers. The devices were fabricated at Yale Center for Microelectronic Materials and Structures and the NSF sponsored Cornell Nanoscale Facility. Part of the funding was provided by a seed grant offered by Yale Institute for Nanoscience and Quantum Information.


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