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A super-oscillatory lens optical microscope for subwavelength imaging

A super-oscillatory lens optical microscope for subwavelength imaging
A super-oscillatory lens optical microscope for subwavelength imaging
The past decade has seen an intensive effort to achieve optical imaging resolution beyond the diffraction limit. Apart from the Pendry-Veselago negative index superlens, implementation of which in optics faces challenges of losses and as yet unattainable fabrication finesse, other super-resolution approaches necessitate the lens either to be in the near proximity of the object or manufactured on it, or work only for a narrow class of samples, such as intensely luminescent or sparse objects. Here we report a new super-resolution microscope for optical imaging that beats the diffraction limit of conventional instruments and the recently demonstrated near-field optical superlens and hyperlens. This non-invasive subwavelength imaging paradigm uses a binary amplitude mask for direct focusing of laser light into a subwavelength spot in the post-evanescent field by precisely tailoring the interference of a large number of beams diffracted from a nanostructured mask. The new technology, which-in principle-has no physical limits on resolution, could be universally used for imaging at any wavelength and does not depend on the luminescence of the object, which can be tens of micrometres away from the mask. It has been implemented as a straightforward modification of a conventional microscope showing resolution better than λ/6.
1476-1122
432-435
Rogers, Edward T.F.
b92cc8ab-0d91-4b2e-b5c7-8a2f490a36a2
Lindberg, Jari
32c441ff-83f8-4eeb-b70e-cce0dfb5038a
Roy, Tapashree
094726f3-177b-468a-be7a-f299d6c4fef5
Savo, Salvatore
a06ac681-5714-4df7-b682-6328dbbe7d39
Chad, John E.
d220e55e-3c13-4d1d-ae9a-1cfae8ccfbe1
Dennis, Mark R.
8b00c8a0-30e2-4690-bfde-02916f80de2f
Zheludev, Nikolay I.
32fb6af7-97e4-4d11-bca6-805745e40cc6
Rogers, Edward T.F.
b92cc8ab-0d91-4b2e-b5c7-8a2f490a36a2
Lindberg, Jari
32c441ff-83f8-4eeb-b70e-cce0dfb5038a
Roy, Tapashree
094726f3-177b-468a-be7a-f299d6c4fef5
Savo, Salvatore
a06ac681-5714-4df7-b682-6328dbbe7d39
Chad, John E.
d220e55e-3c13-4d1d-ae9a-1cfae8ccfbe1
Dennis, Mark R.
8b00c8a0-30e2-4690-bfde-02916f80de2f
Zheludev, Nikolay I.
32fb6af7-97e4-4d11-bca6-805745e40cc6

Rogers, Edward T.F., Lindberg, Jari, Roy, Tapashree, Savo, Salvatore, Chad, John E., Dennis, Mark R. and Zheludev, Nikolay I. (2012) A super-oscillatory lens optical microscope for subwavelength imaging. Nature Materials, 11 (5), 432-435. (doi:10.1038/nmat3280). (PMID:22447113)

Record type: Article

Abstract

The past decade has seen an intensive effort to achieve optical imaging resolution beyond the diffraction limit. Apart from the Pendry-Veselago negative index superlens, implementation of which in optics faces challenges of losses and as yet unattainable fabrication finesse, other super-resolution approaches necessitate the lens either to be in the near proximity of the object or manufactured on it, or work only for a narrow class of samples, such as intensely luminescent or sparse objects. Here we report a new super-resolution microscope for optical imaging that beats the diffraction limit of conventional instruments and the recently demonstrated near-field optical superlens and hyperlens. This non-invasive subwavelength imaging paradigm uses a binary amplitude mask for direct focusing of laser light into a subwavelength spot in the post-evanescent field by precisely tailoring the interference of a large number of beams diffracted from a nanostructured mask. The new technology, which-in principle-has no physical limits on resolution, could be universally used for imaging at any wavelength and does not depend on the luminescence of the object, which can be tens of micrometres away from the mask. It has been implemented as a straightforward modification of a conventional microscope showing resolution better than λ/6.

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Published date: 25 March 2012
Organisations: Optoelectronics Research Centre, Centre for Biological Sciences

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 337620
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/337620
ISSN: 1476-1122
PURE UUID: 89613a61-e920-4cd2-bde7-ab5036d36f39
ORCID for John E. Chad: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6442-4281
ORCID for Nikolay I. Zheludev: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-1013-6636

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 01 May 2012 12:25
Last modified: 10 Dec 2019 01:59

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