Cavity optomechanics on a microfluidic resonator with water and viscous liquids

Kyu Hyun Kim, Gaurav Bahl, Wonsuk Lee, Jing Liu, Matthew Tomes, Xudong Fan, Tal Carmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


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.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere110
JournalLight: Science and Applications
Issue numberNOVEMBER
StatePublished - 2013


  • Nonlinear optics
  • Optical materials and devices
  • Optomechanics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


Dive into the research topics of 'Cavity optomechanics on a microfluidic resonator with water and viscous liquids'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this