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HomeSciencePhysicsFrequency Combs from Just One Mode

Frequency Combs from Just One Mode

• Physics 15, s159

Experiments disprove the final assumption that multiple wave mode is required to supply a spectral sample known as a frequency comb.

D. Okay. J. Boneß/University of Konstanz

Frequency combs—units of sharp, equally spaced spectral strains—have revolutionized metrology. In explicit, they’ve led to extremely correct time and distance measurements. Conventional knowledge means that making a frequency comb requires coupling no less than two wave modes of a system. But Jana Ochs on the University of Konstanz, Germany, and her colleagues have now demonstrated a comb that wants just one such mode [1]. This property offers the comb benefits together with an simply adjustable construction and a low required energy.

Frequency combs are usually produced utilizing mild, however they can be generated utilizing mechanical vibrations, such that every spectral line corresponds to a distinct vibrational frequency. Unlike optical combs, these so-called phononic combs may be tuned in situ. Until now, they’ve been created via a nonlinear coupling of two or extra modes of vibration.

Ochs and her colleagues carried out experiments on a tiny, vibrating system often known as a nanomechanical resonator. This system reveals a single vibrational mode that’s excited by a periodically utilized exterior driving pressure. The low-frequency oscillations within the amplitude and part of this pushed mode are extremely nonlinear. These oscillations modulate the system’s vibration, giving rise to a phononic comb.

The researchers discovered that they may management the quantity and spacing of the comb’s spectral strains by adjusting the frequency and energy of the driving pressure. They say that their experiments present perception into the character of frequency combs and reveal a brand new mechanism for producing such combs. However, the workforce stresses that extra work is required to totally perceive how this mechanism works.

–Ryan Wilkinson

Ryan Wilkinson is a Corresponding Editor for Physics Magazine based mostly in Durham, UK.


  1. J. S. Ochs et al., “Frequency comb from a single driven nonlinear nanomechanical mode,” Phys. Rev. X 12, 041019 (2022).

Subject Areas

NanophysicsCondensed Matter Physics

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