High quality mechanical and optical properties of commercial silicon nitride membranes

B.M. Zwickl, W.E. Shanks, A.M. Jayich, C. Yang, A.C. Bleszynski Jayich, J.D. Thompson, J.G.E. Harris 2008. APL 92, 103125 (2008)


We have measured the optical and mechanical loss of commercial silicon nitride membranes. We find that $50 nm$ thick, $1 mm2$ membranes have mechanical $Q>106$ at $293 K$, and $Q>107$ at $300 mK$, well above what has been observed in devices with comparable dimensions. The near-IR optical loss at $293 K$ is less than $2×10−4$. This combination of properties make these membranes attractive candidates for studying quantum effects in optomechanical systems.