Abstract

We have measured the optical forces on isolated particles trapped in an optical lattice generated by the interference of two coherent laser beams. Two independent methods are employed here that are based on the equipartition theorem and hydrodynamic drag. The optical force on a particle in an optical lattice depends strongly on the ratio of the particle diameter to the period of the lattice. Based on the observed size dependence, we developed an approach that allows tunable, size-dependent force selection of a subset of particles from an ensemble containing mixed particles.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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