Optomechanical crystal (OMC) cavities are simultaneous have photonic and phononic bandgaps. The strong interaction between high co-localized optical mode and mechanical mode are excellent candidates for precision measurements due to their simplicity, sensitivity and all optical operation. Here, we investigate OMC nanobeam cavities in silicon operating at the near-infrared wavelengths to achieve high optomechanical coupling rate and ultra-small motion mass. Numerical simulation results show that the optical Q-factor reached to 1.2×10<sup>5</sup> , which possesses an optical mode resonating at the wavelength of 1181 nm and the extremely localized mechanical mode vibrating at 9.2GHz. Moreover, a novel type of doubly splited nanocavity tailored to sensitively measure torques and mass. In the nanomechanical resonator central hollow area suspended low-mass elements (<100fg) are sensitive to environmental stimulate. By changing the split width, an ultra-small effective motion mass of only 4fg with a mechanical frequency as high as 11.9GHz can be achieved, while the coupling rate up to 1.58MHz. Potential applications on these devices include sensing mass, acceleration, displacement, and magnetic probing the quantum properties of nanoscale systems.
Optical devices based on new sensing principle are widely used in biochemical and medical area. Nowadays, mass sensing based on monitoring the frequency shifts induced by added mass in oscillators is a well-known and widely used technique. It is interesting to note that for nanoscience and nanotechnology applications there is a strong demand for very sensitive mass sensors, being the target a sensor for single molecule detection. The desired mass resolution for very few or even single molecule detection, has to be below the femtogram range. Considering the strong interaction between high co-localized optical mode and mechanical mode in optomechanical crystal (OMC) cavities, we investigate OMC splitnanobeam cavities in silicon operating near at the 1550nm to achieve high optomechanical coupling rate and ultra-small motion mass. Theoretical investigations of the optical and mechanical characteristic for the proposed cavity are carried out. By adjusting the structural parameters, the cavity’s effective motion mass below 10fg and mechanical frequency exceed 10GHz. The transmission spectrum of the cavity is sensitive to the sample which located on the center of the cavity. We conducted the fabrication and the characterization of this cavity sensor on the silicon-on-insulator (SOI) chip. By using vertical coupling between the tapered fiber and the SOI chip, we measured the transmission spectrum of the cavity, and verify this cavity is promising for ultimate precision mass sensing and detection.
Mass sensing based on monitoring the frequency shifts induced by added mass in oscillators is a well-known and widely
used technique. The optomechanical crystal cavity has strong interaction between optical mode and mechanical mode.
Radiation pressure driven optomechanical crystal cavity are excellent candidates for mass detection due to their
simplicity, sensitivity and all optical operation. In an optomechanical crystal cavity, a high quality factor optical mode
simultaneously serves as an efficient actuator and a sensitive probe for precise monitoring the mechanical frequency
change of the cavity structure. Here, a split-nanobeam optomechanical crystal cavity is proposed, the sensing resolution
as small as 0.33ag (1ag=10<sup>-21</sup>kg) and the frequency shift is more than 30MHz. This is important and promising for
achieve ultimate-precision mass sensing including proteins and other molecules.