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S. Kuhn, B. A. Stickler, A. Kosloff, F. Patolsky, K. Hornberger, M. Arndt and J. Millen
Optically driven ultra-stable nanomechanical rotor
Nat. Commun. 8, 1670 (2017)

Abstract:

Nanomechanical devices have attracted the interest of a growing interdisciplinary research community, since they can be used as highly sensitive transducers for various physical quantities. Exquisite control over these systems facilitates experiments on the foundations of physics. Here, we demonstrate that an optically trapped silicon nanorod, set into rotation at MHz frequencies, can be locked to an external clock, transducing the properties of the time standard to the rod's motion with a remarkable frequency stability frfr of 7.7×1011. While the dynamics of this periodically driven rotor generally can be chaotic, we derive and verify that stable limit cycles exist over a surprisingly wide parameter range. This robustness should enable, in principle, measurements of external torques with sensitivities better than 0.25 zNm, even at room temperature. We show that in a dilute gas, real-time phase measurements on the locked nanorod transduce pressure values with a sensitivity of 0.3%

(5 pages, 4 figures)

[journal, eprint arXiv:, pdf]

doi:10.1038/s41467-017-01902-9                    (c) Nature Publishing Group

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