Sensor Turns Faintest Radio Waves into Laser Signals

The nanomembrane itself is made of silicon nitrate and is coated with a thin layer of aluminum, because there has to be a metallic substance to better interact with the electric field. The membrane is separated from the surroundings by being enclosed in a vacuum chamber so that it responds as if it had been cooled down to two degrees Kelvin (minus 271 C). Credit: Ola Jakup Joensen, NBI
The nanomembrane itself is made of silicon nitrate and is coated with a thin layer of aluminum, because there has to be a metallic substance to better interact with the electric field. The membrane is separated from the surroundings by being enclosed in a vacuum chamber so that it responds as if it had been cooled down to two degrees Kelvin (minus 271 C). Credit: Ola Jakup Joensen, NBI
The supersensitive device holds promise for medical imaging and quantum networks

Physicists have found a way to detect faint radio waves and convert them directly into signals that can be transmitted by fiber optics. The discovery could improve the sensitivity of detectors used in magnetic resonance imaging and radio astronomy, and help to connect future quantum computers into a network.

Radio-wave receivers use antennas to pick up radiation. The incoming waves resonate with the antenna and induce a changing electrical signal, which is then transmitted down a wire. Faint radio signals must be boosted by electrical amplifiers such as transistors, which introduce noise — extra fluctuations that, when amplified, can swamp the signal. The amount of noise present sets the limit of the detector’s sensitivity: The best amplifiers must be super-cooled to reduce the thermal vibrations that cause noise.

A team led by physicist Eugene Polzik at the University of Copenhagen’s Niels Bohr Institute has now created a detector that can turn radio signals into optical signals at room temperature, without the need to go through amplification. The device is already as sensitive as state-of-the-art electronics, says Polzik.

Up and down

The key to the approach, described in Nature, is a membrane of silicon nitride less than 200 nanometers thick, coated with aluminium and suspended over a gold plate. When an antenna picks up a radio signal, it creates an oscillating electrical signal in the circuit. This produces a voltage flicking back and forth between the aluminium and the gold, and the resulting attracting and repelling electrostatic forces cause the membrane to move in tune with the wave.

The device detects this motion by bouncing a laser off the membrane and measuring how the motion shifts the laser’s light waves, explains co-author Albert Schliesser, also a physicist at the Niels Bohr Institute. This laser signal can be read out, and its accuracy is limited only by quantum fluctuations of the laser light, he says. Tests show that noise from the membrane is tiny: even at room temperature, the membrane adds 100 times less noise than super-cooled electronic amplifiers, says Schliesser.

Previous experiments have succeeded in converting radio-frequency signals into mechanical vibrations, and in turning mechanical vibrations into light signals, but Schliesser and his colleagues have combined both into a single system.

Read more . . .

 

See Also

The Latest on: Supersensitive sensor

[google_news title=”” keyword=”Supersensitive sensor” num_posts=”10″ blurb_length=”0″ show_thumb=”left”]

via Google News

 

The Latest on: Supersensitive sensor
  • Samsung Galaxy S 4 (GSM)
    on May 21, 2024 at 5:00 pm

    Other upgrades include a faster processor, 13-megapixel camera, super-sensitive touch screen, and infrared universal remote control. It can also detect hand gestures over the display. Unique ...

  • Sensory Processing Disorder
    on May 16, 2024 at 8:25 pm

    Sensory processing disorder—also known as SPD or sensory integration disorder—is a term describing a collection of challenges that occur when the senses fail to respond properly to the outside ...

  • Sensors and biosensors articles from across Nature Portfolio
    on May 13, 2024 at 5:00 pm

    Accurate mapping of strain distribution calls for strain sensor arrays with high sensitivity, high sensing density and inter-unit consistency. Here, the authors report an array made from ordered ...

  • Generation of lossy mode resonances using perovskite nanofilms
    on December 21, 2023 at 7:25 am

    These devices act like super-sensitive detectors that can pick up ... Imagine having a tiny LMR sensor in your smartphone that can tell you if the air quality is safe or if there are harmful ...

  • 14 bit digital output CMOS voltage, temperature sensor in 110nm
    on November 30, 2023 at 3:24 am

    TSENS1KPS110 is an IP for voltage, temperature sensing of the silicon chip die. Each voltage sensor node is connected with the central controller with a single wire digital signal for communicating ...

  • Filming treehoppers in Ecuador
    on November 19, 2023 at 11:09 am

    We brought specialised equipment to tap into this rich world. We clipped a super-sensitive sensor onto the branch, which picked up the vibrations. An amplifier attached to a recording device ...

  • Corsair Darkstar Wireless review: 'An MMO mouse packed with intuitive extra features'
    on June 27, 2023 at 10:38 pm

    Thankfully, the custom Corsair Marksman sensor offers a super sensitive 26,000 DPI, and the ability to adjust this DPI in shifts of 1. That's incredibly precise, and will certainly excite purists ...

  • Quantum Atomic Interferometer For Precision Motion Sensing
    on December 28, 2021 at 12:23 am

    Luckily with a multi-sensor fusion system ... it can be used as a super-sensitive gravimeter which would be useful for ground surveying for sectors such as oil and mineral exploration as well ...

  • Super Simple Sensor Makes DSLR Camera Motion Sensitive
    on January 5, 2019 at 8:19 pm

    The BOM on [Jeremy S Cook]’s build is extremely short – just a PIR sensor and an optoisolator, with a battery, a plug for the camera’s remote jack, and a 3D-printed bracket. The PIR sensor ...

  • Shock and Impact Sensors Information
    on February 11, 2018 at 6:17 am

    Many laptops are fitted with a three-axis shock sensor which detects sudden movements, including free falls and sudden impacts. When the sensor detects vibration or shock which exceeds a predetermined ...

via  Bing News

 

What's Your Reaction?
Don't Like it!
0
I Like it!
0
Scroll To Top