We have developed an inertially sensitive optomechanical laser by combining a vertical-external-cavity surface-emitting laser (VECSEL) with a monolithic fused silica resonator. By placing the external cavity mirror of the VECSEL onto the optomechanical resonator test mass, we create a sensor where external accelerations are directly transcribed onto the lasing frequency. We developed a proof-of-principle laboratory prototype and observe test mass oscillations at the resonance frequency of the sensor through the VECSEL lasing frequency, 4.180.03Hz. In addition, we set up an ancillary heterodyne interferometer to track the motion of the mechanical oscillator's test mass, observing a resonance of 4.1940.004Hz. The interferometer measurements validate the VECSEL results, confirming the feasibility of using optomechanical lasers for inertial sensing.
J Opt Soc Am A Opt Image Sci Vis