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Scanning apertureless microscopy below the diffraction limit: Comparisons between theory and experiment

Hill, C. J. and Bridger, P. M. and Picus, G. S. and McGill, T. C. (1999) Scanning apertureless microscopy below the diffraction limit: Comparisons between theory and experiment. Applied Physics Letters, 75 (25). pp. 4022-4024. ISSN 0003-6951. doi:10.1063/1.125525.

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The exact nature of the signal in scanning apertureless microscopy techniques is the subject of much debate. We have sought to resolve this controversy by carrying out simulations and experiments on the same structures. Simulations of a model of tip–sample coupling are shown to exhibit features that are in agreement with experimental observations at dimensions below the diffraction limit. The simulation of the optical imaging process is carried out using atomic force microscope data as a topographical template and a tip–sample dipole coupling model as the source of optical signal. The simulations show a number of key fingerprints including a dependence on the polarization of the external laser source, the size of the tip, and index of refraction of the sample being imaged. The experimental results are found to be in agreement with many of the features of the simulations. We conclude that the results of the dipole coupling theory agree qualitatively with experimental data and that apertureless microscopy measures optical properties, not just topography.

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Additional Information:©1999 American Institute of Physics. (Received 23 April 1999; accepted 27 October 1999) This work was supported under Office of Naval Research Contract No. N00014-98-1-0567 and by a grant from Hughes Research Laboratories, Inc., LLC.
Subject Keywords:scanning probe microscopy; atomic force microscopy; surface topography; optical images; light polarisation
Issue or Number:25
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:HILapl99
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:2458
Deposited By: Archive Administrator
Deposited On:04 Apr 2006
Last Modified:08 Nov 2021 19:48

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