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Phys Rev Lett. 2006 Mar 24;96(11):113903. Epub 2006 Mar 24.

Stable optical trapping based on optical binding forces.

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  • 1Research Laboratory of Electronics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.


Various trapping configurations have been realized so far, either based on the scattering force or the gradient force. In this Letter, we propose a new trapping regime based on the equilibrium between a scattering force and optical binding forces only. The trap is realized from the interaction between a single plane wave and a series of fixed small particles, and is efficient at trapping multiple free particles. The effects are demonstrated analytically upon computing the exact scattering from a collection of cylindrical particles and calculating the Lorentz force on each free particle via the Maxwell stress tensor.

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