Design and Characterization of WGM NEMS Resonators for Nanoscopic Sensing

Program: Electronics, Photonics and Sensors
Researcher Name: Zhixiong Guo
Department: Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
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Dr. Guo's group is studying whispering-gallery-mode (WGM) resonant phenomena for probing nanoscopic and atomic entities, such as biomolecules and peptides. If we consider a measurable resonant frequency shift (Df / f) = 10-5 and a WGM resonator of radius r ~ 10 µm, then the smallest "measurable" thickness change is (Df / f) r ~ 0.1 nm — sub-nanometer change is detectable!

The figure at left shows a WGM resonator fabricated by the Nanofabrication Research Laboratory, Lucent Technologies, Bell Laboratories, based on our initial design. The fabrication project is sponsored by the New Jersey Nanotechnology Consortium. Experimental studies in characterizing the WGM resonators are on-going, and simulation-based optimal design is underway.

The figure below shows a concept study as proof for WGM nanoscopic biosensing capabilities. This phase of the project is in collaboration with Prof. Hu of the Rutgers College of Pharmacy.