Dynamic Holographic Optical Tweezers
If one tightly focused beam of light creates one optical tweezer, then N separate beams can create N simultaneous traps. Holographic Optical Tweezers (HOTs) use computer-generated holograms, also known as diffractive optical elements (DOEs) or kinoforms, to split a single laser beam into any desired fan-out of beams, each of which is relayed to a strongly converging objective lens and focused into a distinct optical trap. This approach can project hundreds of simultaneous optical traps in arbitrary three-dimensional configurations. Each trap can be imbued with unique characteristics, such as the ability to exert torques as well as forces, and the entire trapping pattern can be updated in real time to dynamically reconfigure and transform mesoscopic matter.
The unprecedented access that holographic optical tweezers provide to structures and processes at length scales ranging from tens of nanometers to hundreds of micrometers creates new avenues for fundamental research in physics, chemistry, biology, and several branches of engineering. Holographic optical tweezers also have immediate practical applications in areas as diverse as biomedical testing and diagnostics, photonics manufacturing, biological and chemical sensor fabrication, and assembly of hierarchically structured functional nanocomposite materials.
Holographic optical tweezers were invented by Eric Dufresne and David Grier at The University of Chicago in 1997. The original reference to the technique isE. R. Dufresne and D. G. Grier, "Optical tweezer arrays and optical substrates created with diffractive optical elements," Rev. Sci. Instr. 69, 1974-1977 (1998).
The patent on holographic optical tweezers was exclusively licensed to Arryx, Inc. in 2000.
|Arryx's commercial implementation of dynamic holographic optical tweezers, the BioRyx 200 ™ system, was honored with an R&D 100 Award for Technical Innovation in 2002.|
David G. Grier Department of Physics Center for Soft Matter Research (212) 998-3713 (voice) New York University (212) 995-4016 (FAX) 4 Washington Place email@example.com New York, NY 10003