We demonstrate a compact spectrometer based on an array of high-quality-factor photonic crystal nanocavities, coupled via a planar two-dimensional waveguide. This architecture enables spectral analysis of incident light with resolution as high as the bandwidth of the cavity mode–0.3 nm at 840 nm for our device. The design is easily extended to the visible and deep-infrared spectral ranges. The two-dimensional cavity array can be mated to commercial two-dimensional optical detector arrays, creating a compact and high-resolution spectrometer suitable for a range of applications including materials and chemical analysis.

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