Senlin Zhang, Zhengdong Yong, Yaocheng Shi & Sailing He
A slotted nanobeam cavity (SNC) is utilized to trap a polystyrene (PS) particle with a radius of only 2 nm. The carefully designed SNC shows an ultrahigh Q factor of 4.5 × 107 while maintaining a small mode volume of 0.067(λ/nwater)3. Strongly enhanced optical trapping force is numerically demonstrated when the 2 nm PS particle is introduced into the central, slotted part of the SNC. In the vertical direction, the numerical calculation results show that a trapping stiffness of 0.4 pN/(nm · mW) around the equilibrium position and a trapping potential barrier of ~2000 kBT/mW can be reached. To our best knowledge, the trapping capability (trapping stiffness and trapping potential barrier) of the proposed structure significantly outperforms the theoretical results of those in previously reported work. In addition, the SNC system does not suffer from the metal induced heat issue that restricts the performance of state-of-the-art optical trapping systems involving plasmonic enhancement. Based on the proposed cavity, applications such as lab-on-a-chip platforms for nanoscale particle trapping and analysis can be expected in future.