Dry launching of silica nanoparticles in vacuum

Ayub Khodaee, Kahan Dare, Aisling Johnson, Uroš Delić, Markus Aspelmeyer (Corresponding author)

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Clean loading of silica nanoparticles with a radius as small as ∼50 nm is required for experiments in levitated optomechanics that operate in ultra-high vacuum. We present a cheap and simple experimental method for dry launching of silica nanoparticles by shaking from a polytetrafluoroethylene surface (PTFE). We report on the successful launching of single silica nanoparticles with a minimum radius of 43 nm, which is enabled by the low stiction to the launching surface. Nanoparticles with radii of 43 and 71.5 nm are launched with a high flux and small spread. The measured velocities are significantly smaller than 1 m/s. The demonstrated launching method allows for controlled loading of dry nanoparticles with radii as small as 43 nm into optical traps in (ultra-)high vacuum, although we anticipate that loading of smaller sizes is equally feasible.

Original languageEnglish
Article number125023
Number of pages5
JournalAIP Advances
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2022

Austrian Fields of Science 2012

  • 103026 Quantum optics

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