Non-spherical optically trapped probes: Design, control, and applications

J. A. Grieve, D. B. Phillips, S. Hanna, R. W. Bowman, G. M. Gibson, M. J. Padgett, M. J. Miles, D. M. Carberry, S. H. Simpson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

2 Citations (Scopus)


In this proceedings paper we show describe how a microtool can be assembled, and tracked in three dimensions such that its full rotational and translational coordinates, q, are recovered. This allows tracking of the motion of any arbitrary point, d, on the microtool's surface. When the micro-tool is held using multiple optical traps the motion of such a point investigates the inside of an ellipsoidal volume - we term this a 'thermal ellipsoid. We demonstrate how the shape of this thermal ellipsoid may be controlled by varying the relative trapping power of the optical traps, and adjusting the angle at which the micro-tool is held relative to the focal plane. Our experimental results follow the trends derived by Simpson and Hanna.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOptical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IX
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventOptical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IX - San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: 12 Aug 201216 Aug 2012


ConferenceOptical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IX
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA


  • Directed assembly
  • Holographic optical tweezers
  • Microtools
  • Nanotools


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