Title

Measuring and Characterizing Thermo-Optic Response of Mirror Coatings

Presenter

Matt Gabel

Abstract

Thermo-optic noise is caused by small temperature changes at the surface of a mirror. It is comprised of both a physical expansion in the mirror coating and changes in the mirror’s reflective properties (which can result in apparent length changes). These length changes were measured with an interferometer where one end mirror was hit by a pumped heating beam. Once data from the interferometer is collected with low enough noise for the thermo-optic response to be visible, the data can be used to calculate coefficients for both the physical expansion and changes in reflective properties of any given mirror. By better understanding thermo-optic noise, the thermo-optic noise threshold can be lowered in high-precision optical measurements such as those being undertaken at the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO).

Faculty Sponsor

Gregory Ogin

Sponsor Department/Programs

Physics

Tracks

Physical Science

Location

Science 159

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

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Apr 11th, 9:30 AM Apr 11th, 9:45 AM

Measuring and Characterizing Thermo-Optic Response of Mirror Coatings

Science 159

Thermo-optic noise is caused by small temperature changes at the surface of a mirror. It is comprised of both a physical expansion in the mirror coating and changes in the mirror’s reflective properties (which can result in apparent length changes). These length changes were measured with an interferometer where one end mirror was hit by a pumped heating beam. Once data from the interferometer is collected with low enough noise for the thermo-optic response to be visible, the data can be used to calculate coefficients for both the physical expansion and changes in reflective properties of any given mirror. By better understanding thermo-optic noise, the thermo-optic noise threshold can be lowered in high-precision optical measurements such as those being undertaken at the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO).