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Investigation of mechanical losses of thin silicon flexures at low temperatures

: Tünnermann, A. et al.

Fulltext (PDF; )

Online im WWW, 2010, 16 pp.
Report, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IOF ()

The investigation of the mechanical loss of different silicon flexures in a temperature region from 5 to 300K is presented. The flexures have been prepared by different fabrication techniques. A lowest mechanical loss of 3×10 to -8 was observed for a 130 µm thick flexure at around 10K. While the mechanical loss follows the thermoelastic predictions down to 50K a difference can be observed at lower temperatures for different surface treatments. This surface loss will be limiting for all applications using silicon based oscillators at low temperatures. The extraction of a surface loss parameter using different results from our measurements and other references is presented. We focused on structures that are relevant for gravitational wave detectors. The surface loss parameter s = 0.5 pm was obtained. This reveals that the surface loss of silicon is significantly lower than the surface loss of fused silica.