Optimized apertureless optical near-field probes with 15 nm optical resolution

H. G. Frey, C. Bolwien, A. Brandenburg, R. Ros, D. Anselmetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Back-illuminated full body glass tips coated with a thin metal layer can be used as local probes for apertureless scanning near-field optical microscopy (SNOM). In order to achieve high spatial resolution, high electric field intensities and low background illumination, the thickness of the metal coating, angular illumination direction, and polarization have to be optimized. Optimal conditions have been calculated and experimentally verified for 10-15nm thick aluminium and 15-25nm thick silver layers. Upon imaging single dye molecules, characteristic single and double-peak patterns with peak widths down to 15nm could be measured, exhibiting an optical resolution which exceeds the classical diffraction limit of Abbé significantly.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number004
Pages (from-to)3105-3110
Number of pages6
Issue number13
StatePublished - Jul 14 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Optimized apertureless optical near-field probes with 15 nm optical resolution'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this