Aravind Krishnan, Ningfeng Huang, Shao-Hua Wu, Luis Javier Martínez, and Michelle L. Povinelli
Applicability of optical trapping tools for nanomanipulation is limited by the available laser power and trap efficiency. We utilized the strong confinement of light in a slot-graphite photonic crystal to develop high-efficiency parallel trapping over a large area. The stiffness is 35 times higher than our previously demonstrated on-chip, near field traps. We demonstrate the ability to trap both dielectric and metallic particles of sub-micron size. We find that the growth kinetics of nanoparticle arrays on the slot-graphite template depends on particle size. This difference is exploited to selectively trap one type of particle out of a binary colloidal mixture, creating an efficient optical sieve. This technique has rich potential for analysis, diagnostics, and enrichment and sorting of microscopic entities.