Light-induced parametric amplification in MEMS oscillators

M. Zalalutdinov, A. Olkhovets, A. T. Zehnder, B. Ilic, D. Czaplewcki, J. M. Parpia, Harold G. Craighead

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Micromechanical oscillators in the radio frequency (rf) range were fabricated in the form of silicon discs supported by a SiO2 pillar at the disc center. Effective spring constant of this oscillator can be controlled within the range Δf/f∼10-4 by a low power laser beam, (Plaser∼100 μW), focused at the periphery of the disc. Parametric amplification of the disc's vibrations was achieved through a double frequency modulation of the laser power. An amplitude gain of up to 30 was demonstrated, with further increase limited by non-linear behavior and self-generation. Phase dependence, inherent in degenerate parametric amplification, was also observed. Self-modulation of the CW laser beam (Plaser∼100 μW) provided by placing the disc oscillator into a interference pattern setup can lead to parametric self-excitation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-309
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001
EventDesign, Test, Integration, and Packaging of MEMS/MOEMS 2001 - Cannes, France
Duration: Apr 25 2001Apr 27 2001


  • High-frequency
  • Light pumping
  • MEMS
  • Oscillator
  • Parametric amplification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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