Overview of Optomechanics in Hamburg: SQL and Beyond

Dr Sacha Kocsis
Hamburg University
2pm Tuesday 27 September 2016
CQC2T Conference Room Level 2, Newton Building, UNSW

Optomechanics deals with the interaction between electromagnetic radiation and mechanical objects. The optomechanical interaction is caused by radiation-pressure force, which was experimentally observed over a century ago. Modern interest in optomechanics is motivated from a few different directions: ultra-sensitive optical detection of forces, displacements and accelerations (e.g. LIGO); optomechanical systems as quantum transducer for applications in quantum information; and preparing and detecting nonclassical states of light and mechanical motion, which opens up possibilities for fundamental tests of quantum theory in hitherto inaccessible mass regimes.

I will present an overview of optomechanics research in Prof. Roman Schnabel's group at Hamburg University. In the first part of the talk, I will describe the current project to optically detect the motion of a silicon nitride membrane in the middle of a Fabry-Perot cavity with a sensitivity at the standard quantum limit (SQL). The SQL is commonly understand to separate the 'classical' and 'quantum' measurement regimes, and in the second part of the talk I will describe the long-term goal of detecting EPR-entangled joint motion of two macroscopic mirrors.