OSA's Digital Library

Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics


  • Editor: Gregory W. Faris
  • Vol. 1, Iss. 11 — Nov. 13, 2006

Mechanically tunable optofluidic distributed feedback dye laser

Zhenyu Li, Zhaoyu Zhang, Axel Scherer, and Demetri Psaltis  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 14, Issue 22, pp. 10494-10499 (2006)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (310 KB) Open Access

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



A continuously tunable optofluidic distributed feedback (DFB) dye laser was demonstrated on a monolithic replica molded poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) chip. The optical feedback was provided by a phase-shifted higher order Bragg grating embedded in the liquid core of a single mode buried channel waveguide. Due to the soft elastomeric nature of PDMS, the laser frequency could be tuned by mechanically stretching the grating period. In principle, the mechanical tuning range is only limited by the gain bandwidth. A tuning range of nearly 60nm was demonstrated from a single dye laser chip by combining two common dye molecules Rhodamine 6G and Rhodamine 101. Single-mode operation was maintained with less than 0.1nm linewidth. Because of the higher order grating, a single laser, when operated with different dye solutions, can provide tunable light output covering the entire spectrum from near UV to near IR in which efficient laser dyes are available. An array of five DFB dye lasers with different grating periods was also demonstrated on a chip. Such tunable integrated laser arrays are expected to become key components in inexpensive advanced spectroscopy chips.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(130.3120) Integrated optics : Integrated optics devices
(140.2050) Lasers and laser optics : Dye lasers
(140.3490) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, distributed-feedback
(140.3570) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, single-mode
(140.3600) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, tunable
(230.7380) Optical devices : Waveguides, channeled

ToC Category:
Lasers and Laser Optics

Original Manuscript: July 28, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: October 13, 2006
Published: October 30, 2006

Virtual Issues
Vol. 1, Iss. 11 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Zhenyu Li, Zhaoyu Zhang, Axel Scherer, and Demetri Psaltis, "Mechanically tunable optofluidic distributed feedback dye laser," Opt. Express 14, 10494-10499 (2006)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. B. Helbo, A. Kristensen, and A. Menon, "A micro-cavity fluidic dye laser," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 307-311 (2003). [CrossRef]
  2. D.V. Vezenov, B.T. Mayers, R.S. Conroy, G.M. Witesides, P.T. Snee, Y. Chan, D.G. Nocera, and M.G. Bawendi, "A low-threshold, high-efficiency microfluidic waveguide laser," J. Am. Chem. Soc. 127(25), 8952-8953 (2005). [CrossRef]
  3. J.C. Galas, J. Torres, M. Belotti, Q. Kou, and Y. Chen, "Microfluidic tunable dye laser with integrated mixer and ring resonator," App. Phys. Lett. 86, 264101 (2005). [CrossRef]
  4. B. Bilenberg, B. Helbo, J.P. Kutter and A. Kristensen, "Tunable Microfluidic Dye Laser," Proceedings of the 12th Int. Conf. on Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems, Transducers, 206-209 (2003).
  5. D. Psaltis, S.R. Quake and C. Yang, "Developing optofluidic technology through the fusion of microfluidics and optics," Nature 442, 381-386, (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. Z. Li, Z. Zhang, T. Emery, A. Scherer and D. Psaltis, "Single mode optofluidic distributed feedback dye laser," Opt. Express 14, 696-701 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. A. Yariv, Optical Electronics in Modern Communications (Oxford, New York, 1997).
  8. M.A. Unger, H.P. Chou, T. Thorsen, A. Scherer, S.R. Quake, "Monolithic microfabricated valves and pumps by multilayer soft lithography," Science 288, 113-116 (2000). [CrossRef]
  9. L.A. Wellerbrophy and D.G. Hall, "Analysis of wave-guide gratings - application of Rouard’s method," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 2,863-871 (1985). [CrossRef]
  10. C.V. Shank, J.E. Bjorkholm and H. Kogelnik, "Tunable distributed-feedback dye laser," App. Phys. Lett. 18, 395-396 (1971). [CrossRef]
  11. J.C. McDonald and G.M. Whitesides, "Poly(dimethylsiloxane) as a material for fabricating microfluidic devices," Acc. Chem. Res. 35, 491-499 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  12. W.T. Silfvast, Laser Fundamentals (Cambridge, Cambridge, 2004).
  13. Y. Oki, S. Miyamoto, M. Maeda and N. J. Vasa, "Multiwavelength distributed-feedback dye laser array and its application to spectroscopy," Opt. Lett. 27, 1220-1222 (2002). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.


Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 3.
Fig. 4.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited