Synthetic magnetism has been used to control charge neutral excitations for applications ranging from classical beam steering to quantum simulation. In optomechanics, radiation-pressure-induced parametric coupling between optical (photon) and mechanical (phonon) excitations may be used to break time-reversal symmetry, providing the prerequisite for synthetic magnetism. Here we design and fabricate a silicon optomechanical circuit with both optical and mechanical connectivity between two optomechanical cavities. Driving the two cavities with phase-correlated laser light results in a synthetic magnetic flux, which, in combination with dissipative coupling to the mechanical bath, leads to non-reciprocal transport of photons with 35 dB of isolation. Additionally, optical pumping with blue-detuned light manifests as a particle non-conserving interaction between photons and phonons, resulting in directional optical amplification of 12 dB in the isolator through-direction. These results suggest the possibility of using optomechanical circuits to create a more general class of non-reciprocal optical devices, and further, to enable new topological phases for both light and sound on a microchip.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)