Strong quantum squeezing near the pull-in instability of a nonlinear beam
by Ali Passian, George Siopsis
Microscopic silicon-based suspended mechanical oscillators, constituting an extremely sensitive force probe, transducer, and actuator, are being increasingly employed in many developing microscopies, spectroscopies, and emerging optomechanical and chem-bio sensors. We predict a significant squeezing in the quantum state of motion of an oscillator constrained as a beam and subject to an electrically induced nonlinearity. By taking into account the quantum noise, the underlying nonlinear dynamics is investigated in both the transient and stationary regimes of the driving force leading to the finding that strongly squeezed states are accessible in the vicinity of the pull-in instability of the oscillator. We discuss a possible application of this strong quantum squeezing as an optomechanical method for detecting broad-spectrum single or low-count photons, and further suggest other novel sensing actions.