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Z-Axis Optomechanical Accelerometer

Abstract

We demonstrate a z-axis accelerometer which uses waveguided light to sense proof mass displacement. The accelerometer consists of two stacked rings (one fixed and one suspended above it) forming an optical ring resonator. As the upper ring moves due to z-axis acceleration, the effective refractive index changes, changing the optical path length and therefore the resonant frequency of the optical mode. The optical transmission changes with acceleration when the laser is biased on the side of the optical resonance. This silicon nitride "Cavity-enhanced OptoMechanical Accelerometer" (COMA) has a sensitivity of 22 percent-per-g optical modulation for our highest optical quality factor (Q_o) devicesComment: Published in Proceedings of the 25th IEEE International Conference on Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS 2012), Paris, France, January 29 - Feb 2, 2012, pp. 615-61

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