Trapping and cooling a mirror to its quantum mechanical ground state

M. Bhattacharya, P. Meystre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

156 Scopus citations


We propose a technique aimed at cooling a harmonically oscillating mirror to its quantum mechanical ground state starting from room temperature. Our method, which involves the two-sided irradiation of the vibrating mirror inside an optical cavity, combines several advantages over the two-mirror arrangements being used currently. For comparable parameters the three-mirror configuration provides a stiffer trap for the oscillating mirror. Furthermore, it prevents bistability from limiting the use of higher laser powers for mirror trapping, and also partially does so for mirror cooling. Lastly, it improves the isolation of the mirror from classical noise so that the quantum mechanical dynamics of the mirror become easier to observe. These improvements are expected to bring the task of achieving and detecting ground state occupation for the mirror closer to completion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number073601
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number7
StatePublished - Aug 15 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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