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Opt Express. 2009 Jan 5;17(1):163-9.

Demonstration of a cavity coupler based on a resonant waveguide grating.

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  • 1Institut für Angewandte Physik, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Jena, Germany.


Thermal noise in multilayer optical coatings may not only limit the sensitivity of future gravitational wave detectors in their most sensitive frequency band but is also a major impediment for experiments that aim to reach the standard quantum limit or to cool mechanical systems to their quantum ground state. Here, we present the experimental realization and characterization of a cavity coupler, which is based on a surface relief guided ode resonant grating. Since the required thickness of the dielectric coating is dramatically decreased compared to conventional mirrors, it is expected to provide low mechanical loss and, thus, low thermal noise. The cavity coupler was incorporated into a Fabry-Perot resonator together with a conventional high quality mirror. The finesse of this cavity was measured to be F = 657, which corresponds to a coupler reflectivity of R = 99.08 %.

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