Amorphous silicon with extremely low absorption: beating thermal noise in gravitational astronomy

Ross Birney, J. Steinlechner, Z. Tornasi, Sean Macfoy, David Vine, A.S. Bell, Desmond Gibson, Jim Hough, Sheila Rowan, P. Sortais, S. Sproules, S. Tait, Iain W. Martin, Stuart Reid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Amorphous silicon has ideal properties for many applications in fundamental research and industry. However, the optical absorption is often unacceptably high, particularly for gravitational wave detection. We report a novel ion beam deposition method for fabricating amorphous silicon with unprecedentedly low unpaired electron spin density and optical absorption; the spin-limit on absorption being surpassed for the first time. At low unpaired electron density, the absorption is no longer correlated with electron spins, but with the electronic mobility gap. Compared to standard ion beam deposition, the absorption at 1550,nm is lower by a factor of ≈100. This breakthrough shows that amorphous silicon could be exploited as an extreme performance optical coating in near-infra-red applications and it represents an important proof-of-concept for future gravitational wave detectors.
Original languageEnglish
Article number191101
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume121
Early online date6 Nov 2018
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 6 Nov 2018

Fingerprint

thermal noise
astronomy
amorphous silicon
electron spin
gravitational waves
optical absorption
ion beams
optical coatings
industries
detectors
electronics

Cite this

Birney, Ross ; Steinlechner, J. ; Tornasi, Z. ; Macfoy, Sean ; Vine, David ; Bell, A.S. ; Gibson, Desmond ; Hough, Jim ; Rowan, Sheila ; Sortais, P. ; Sproules, S. ; Tait, S. ; Martin, Iain W. ; Reid, Stuart . / Amorphous silicon with extremely low absorption : beating thermal noise in gravitational astronomy. In: Physical Review Letters. 2018 ; Vol. 121.
@article{a42b02b8527048a5a5f5824c505d8eb9,
title = "Amorphous silicon with extremely low absorption: beating thermal noise in gravitational astronomy",
abstract = "Amorphous silicon has ideal properties for many applications in fundamental research and industry. However, the optical absorption is often unacceptably high, particularly for gravitational wave detection. We report a novel ion beam deposition method for fabricating amorphous silicon with unprecedentedly low unpaired electron spin density and optical absorption; the spin-limit on absorption being surpassed for the first time. At low unpaired electron density, the absorption is no longer correlated with electron spins, but with the electronic mobility gap. Compared to standard ion beam deposition, the absorption at 1550,nm is lower by a factor of ≈100. This breakthrough shows that amorphous silicon could be exploited as an extreme performance optical coating in near-infra-red applications and it represents an important proof-of-concept for future gravitational wave detectors.",
author = "Ross Birney and J. Steinlechner and Z. Tornasi and Sean Macfoy and David Vine and A.S. Bell and Desmond Gibson and Jim Hough and Sheila Rowan and P. Sortais and S. Sproules and S. Tait and Martin, {Iain W.} and Stuart Reid",
year = "2018",
month = "11",
day = "6",
doi = "10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.191101",
language = "English",
volume = "121",
journal = "Physical Review Letters",
issn = "0031-9007",
publisher = "American Physical Society",

}

Birney, R, Steinlechner, J, Tornasi, Z, Macfoy, S, Vine, D, Bell, AS, Gibson, D, Hough, J, Rowan, S, Sortais, P, Sproules, S, Tait, S, Martin, IW & Reid, S 2018, 'Amorphous silicon with extremely low absorption: beating thermal noise in gravitational astronomy' Physical Review Letters, vol. 121, 191101. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.191101

Amorphous silicon with extremely low absorption : beating thermal noise in gravitational astronomy. / Birney, Ross; Steinlechner, J.; Tornasi, Z.; Macfoy, Sean; Vine, David; Bell, A.S.; Gibson, Desmond; Hough, Jim; Rowan, Sheila; Sortais, P.; Sproules, S.; Tait, S.; Martin, Iain W.; Reid, Stuart .

In: Physical Review Letters, Vol. 121, 191101, 06.11.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Amorphous silicon with extremely low absorption

T2 - beating thermal noise in gravitational astronomy

AU - Birney, Ross

AU - Steinlechner, J.

AU - Tornasi, Z.

AU - Macfoy, Sean

AU - Vine, David

AU - Bell, A.S.

AU - Gibson, Desmond

AU - Hough, Jim

AU - Rowan, Sheila

AU - Sortais, P.

AU - Sproules, S.

AU - Tait, S.

AU - Martin, Iain W.

AU - Reid, Stuart

PY - 2018/11/6

Y1 - 2018/11/6

N2 - Amorphous silicon has ideal properties for many applications in fundamental research and industry. However, the optical absorption is often unacceptably high, particularly for gravitational wave detection. We report a novel ion beam deposition method for fabricating amorphous silicon with unprecedentedly low unpaired electron spin density and optical absorption; the spin-limit on absorption being surpassed for the first time. At low unpaired electron density, the absorption is no longer correlated with electron spins, but with the electronic mobility gap. Compared to standard ion beam deposition, the absorption at 1550,nm is lower by a factor of ≈100. This breakthrough shows that amorphous silicon could be exploited as an extreme performance optical coating in near-infra-red applications and it represents an important proof-of-concept for future gravitational wave detectors.

AB - Amorphous silicon has ideal properties for many applications in fundamental research and industry. However, the optical absorption is often unacceptably high, particularly for gravitational wave detection. We report a novel ion beam deposition method for fabricating amorphous silicon with unprecedentedly low unpaired electron spin density and optical absorption; the spin-limit on absorption being surpassed for the first time. At low unpaired electron density, the absorption is no longer correlated with electron spins, but with the electronic mobility gap. Compared to standard ion beam deposition, the absorption at 1550,nm is lower by a factor of ≈100. This breakthrough shows that amorphous silicon could be exploited as an extreme performance optical coating in near-infra-red applications and it represents an important proof-of-concept for future gravitational wave detectors.

U2 - 10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.191101

DO - 10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.191101

M3 - Article

VL - 121

JO - Physical Review Letters

JF - Physical Review Letters

SN - 0031-9007

M1 - 191101

ER -