A simple method for characterizing and engineering thermal relaxation of an optical microcavity

Weijian Chen, Jiangang Zhu, Şahin Kaya Özdemir, Bo Peng, Lan Yang

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16 Scopus citations


Thermal properties of a photonic resonator are determined not only by intrinsic properties of materials, such as thermo-optic coefficient, but also by the geometry and structure of the resonator. Techniques for characterization and measurement of thermal properties of individual photonic resonator will benefit numerous applications. In this work, we demonstrate a method to optically measure the thermal relaxation time and effective thermal conductance of a whispering gallery mode microcavity using optothermal effect. Two nearby optical modes within the cavity are optically probed, which allows us to quantify the thermal relaxation process of the cavity by analyzing changes in the transmission spectra induced by optothermal effect. We show that the effective thermal conductance can be experimentally deduced from the thermal relaxation measurement, and it can be tailored by changing the geometric parameters of the cavity. The experimental observations are in good agreement with the proposed analytical modeling. This method can be applied to various resonators in different forms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number061103
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 8 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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