By measuring the excitation efficiency of an optical waveguide on a diffraction grating one can accurately register the changes in the incidence angle of the exciting light beam. This phenomenon was applied to detect ultrasmall deflections of silicon dioxide cantilevers of submicrometer thickness that were fabricated with corrugation on top to act as diffraction grating couplers. The power of light coupled into the cantilevers was monitored with a conventional photodetector and modulated using mechanical vibration of the cantilever, thus changing the spatial orientation of the coupler with respect to the incident light beam. The technique can be considered as an alternative to the methods known for detection of cantilever deflection.
© 2006 Optical Society of America
(050.2770) Diffraction and gratings : Gratings
(230.4000) Optical devices : Microstructure fabrication
(310.2790) Thin films : Guided waves
(310.6860) Thin films : Thin films, optical properties
Diffraction and Gratings
K. Zinoviev, C. Dominguez, J. A. Plaza, V. Cadarso, and L. M. Lechuga, "Light coupling into an optical microcantilever by an embedded diffraction grating," Appl. Opt. 45, 229-234 (2006)