Approaching the Strain-Free Limit in Ultrathin Nanomechanical Resonators

Jian Zhou, Nicolaie Moldovan, Liliana Stan, Haogang Cai, David A. Czaplewski, Daniel López

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Ultrathin mechanical structures are ideal building platforms to pursue the ultimate limit of nanomechanical resonators for applications in sensing, signal processing, and quantum physics. Unfortunately, as the thickness of the vibrating structures is reduced, the built-in strain of the structural materials plays an increased role in determining the mechanical performance of the devices. As a consequence, it is very challenging to fabricate resonators working in the modulus-dominant regime, where their dynamic behavior is exclusively determined by the device geometry. In this Letter, we report ultrathin doubly clamped nanomechanical resonators with aspect ratios as large as L/t ∼5000 and working in the modulus-dominant regime. We observed room temperature thermomechanically induced motion of multiple vibration modes with resonant frequencies closely matching the predicted values of Euler-Bernoulli beam theory under an axial strain of 6.3 × 10-8. The low strain of the devices enables a record frequency tuning ratio of more than 50 times. These results illustrate a new strategy for the quantitative design of nanomechanical resonators with unprecedented performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5693-5698
Number of pages6
JournalNano letters
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 12 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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