Light-driven three-dimensional rotational motion of dandelion-shaped microparticles

Hagay Shpaisman, David B. Ruffner, David G. Grier

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Chemically synthesized colloidal particles featuring large-scale surface asperities can be trapped and manipulated in fluid media through holographic optical trapping. Light scattering by these particles' surface features provides a mechanism for holographic optical traps also to exert torques on them, thereby setting them in steady rotation about arbitrary axes in three dimensions. When pairs of rotating particles are brought close enough that their surface features mesh, they form microscopic gear trains. These micro-opto-mechanical systems can be arranged in any desired three-dimensional configuration.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number071103
    JournalApplied Physics Letters
    Issue number7
    StatePublished - Feb 18 2013

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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