Nonlinear dynamics and strong cavity cooling of levitated nanoparticles

PZG Fonseca, EB Aranas, J Millen, TS Monteiro, PF Barker

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121 Citations (Scopus)


Optomechanical systems explore and exploit the coupling between light and the mechanical motion of macroscopic matter. A nonlinear coupling offers rich new physics, in both quantum and classical regimes. We investigate a dynamic, as opposed to the usually studied static, nonlinear optomechanical system, comprising a nanosphere levitated in a hybrid electro-optical trap. The cavity offers readout of both linear-in-position and quadratic-in-position (nonlinear) light-matter coupling, while simultaneously cooling the nanosphere, for indefinite periods of time and in high vacuum. We observe the cooling dynamics via both linear and nonlinear coupling. As the background gas pressure was lowered, we observed a greater than 1000-fold reduction in temperature before temperatures fell below readout sensitivity in the present setup. This Letter opens the way to strongly coupled quantum dynamics between a cavity and a nanoparticle largely decoupled from its environment.
Original languageEnglish
Article number173602
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number17
Early online date21 Oct 2016
Publication statusPublished - 21 Oct 2016


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