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We describe and demonstrate a method to control a detuned movable-mirror Fabry-Pérot cavity using radiation pressure in the presence of a strong optical spring. At frequencies below the optical spring resonance, self-locking of the cavity is achieved intrinsically by the optomechanical (OM) interaction between the cavity field and the movable end mirror. The OM interaction results in a high rigidity and reduced susceptibility of the mirror to external forces. However, due to a finite delay time in the cavity, this enhanced rigidity is accompanied by an antidamping force, which destabilizes the cavity. The cavity is stabilized by applying external feedback in a frequency band around the optical spring resonance. The error signal is sensed in the amplitude quadrature of the transmitted beam with a photodetector. An amplitude modulator in the input path to the cavity modulates the light intensity to provide the stabilizing radiation pressure force.

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Physical Review A