A tractor beam can deflect an asteroid on a collision course with Earth is still a distant dream.But gradually, the concept of a beam capable of pulling material out of touch begins to be tested in laboratories, and is now a reality for the nanoparticles .Thus, taking into account the reality of the tractor-rays are feasible in the realm of nanotechnology, the discovery made by Daniel Brooks and his colleagues is a landmark in the area.
Using an optical tweezers system, capable of trapping ultra-cold atoms, the researchers reported the first direct observations of different quantum optical effects – Amplification and compression – acting on a mechanical system.In other words, the lamp acts on a mechanical device in a controlled manner and vice-versa. Thus, both the light can control the mechanical, such as mechanical can be used to subdue the light, eventually causing it to change frequency.
Tractor beam optical
The light is trapped within an optical cavity resonance frequencies of specific more or less as the pressure produces a guitar string specific tones.When a small flexible bar – a mechanical resonator – is placed inside the cavity, the resonant frequency of the light that is undergoing changes – more or less like running your finger across the guitar string changes the tones made.
What draws attention, however, is that when passing through the optical cavity, light acts as a tractor beam, pulling and pushing the metal bar of the mechanical resonator.With such a system, built with sufficient accuracy, it is possible to detect the slightest mechanical movement – possibly even the movement generated by the elusive gravitational waves .
The reverse is also true, with minor fluctuations of the light causing the atoms to vibrate slightly, controlling the motion of matter with light.
Science fiction technologies
The demonstration not only paves the way for fundamental studies of quantum mechanics – such asquantum processors – but also can tell us much about the classical world with which we interact.“There have been proposals to use optomechanics devices as transducers, coupling the motion to microwaves or visible light, allowing you to convert photons from one frequency to another,” says Brooks.
“There are also proposals to curb or storage of light in mechanical degrees of freedom, the equivalent ofelectromagnetically induced transparency , where one photon is stored within the internal degrees of freedom. “
The researcher concludes that the experiment opens up possibilities of “technologies that seem science fiction today.”
The results also have an impact on the theory, since the observations differ significantly from data obtained from the linear model equations.The team at UC Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, found that the interactions optomechanics generate non-classical light, suggesting the need for a new theory optomechanics nonlinear to explain their data.