Currently, optical or mechanical resonances are commonly used in microfluidic research. However, optomechanical oscillations by light pressure were not shown with liquids. This is because replacing the surrounding air with water inherently increases the acoustical impedance and hence, the associated acoustical radiation losses. Here, we bridge between microfluidics and optomechanics by fabricating a hollow-bubble resonator with liquid inside and optically exciting vibrations with 100 MHz rates using only mW optical-input power. This constitutes the first time that any microfluidic system is optomechanically actuated. We further prove the feasibility of microfluidic optomechanics on liquids by demonstrating vibrations on organic fluids with viscous dissipation higher than blood viscosity while measuring density changes in the liquid via the vibration frequency shift. Our device will enable using cavity optomechanics for studying non-solid phases of matter, while light is easily coupled from the outer dry side of the capillary and fluid is provided using a standard syringe pump.
- Nonlinear optics
- Optical materials and devices