Chip-scale high Q-factor glassblown microspherical shells for magnetic sensing

AIP Adv. 2018 Jun 14;8(6):065214. doi: 10.1063/1.5030460. eCollection 2018 Jun.


A whispering gallery mode resonator based magnetometer using chip-scale glass microspherical shells is described. A neodynium micro-magnet is elastically coupled and integrated on top of the microspherical shell structure that enables transduction of the magnetic force experienced by the magnet in external magnetic fields into an optical resonance frequency shift. High quality factor optical microspherical shell resonators with ultra-smooth surfaces have been successfully fabricated and integrated with magnets to achieve Q-factors of greater than 1.1 × 107 and have shown a resonance shift of 1.43 GHz/mT (or 4.0 pm/mT) at 760 nm wavelength. The main mode of action is mechanical deformation of the microbubble with a minor contribution from the photoelastic effect. An experimental limit of detection of 60 nT Hz-1/2 at 100 Hz is demonstrated. A theoretical thermorefractive limited detection limit of 52 pT Hz-1/2 at 100 Hz is calculated from the experimentally derived sensitivity. The paper describes the mode of action, sensitivity and limit of detection is evaluated for the chip-scale whispering gallery mode magnetometer.