Condensed Matter Proseminar (Spring 2009)

Dissipation and Noise

This topic is stongly related to statistical mechanics and the fluctuation-disipation theorem. We would try to understand the fundamentals of dissipation and we would focus on common sources of dissipation in nanomechanical systems. We would discuss experimental strategies to avoid such loss. Finally, we may go into different types of measurement noise and what information can be gleaned from measuring noise.


Cooling of Resonators into the Vibrational Ground State

This has been a very hot topic in recent years and it is the subject of a large number of recent papers. We would first try to understand the motivations behind trying to cool mechanical resonators down to very low temperatures and then we would evaluate some of the modern approaches. This field is still developing and there are still many open questions, so it may prove interesting if you like to speculate about what will be discovered in the future.


Spin Noise

I know that this topic is not directly related to nanomechanics, but I think it’s an interesting one to consider anyway. Several recent experiments on spin noise were done using nanomechanical sensors. The presence of spin noise was predicted by Bloch in the 1940s and has just recently been used in measurements.



If you’re interested in lookin into other topics, the following is an excellent text book on nanomechanics. I can make copies of relevant chapters for you if you like or alternatively you could look for the book in the library.

  • Foundations of Nanomechanics, A. N. Cleland (Springer, 2003).