Readout of a phase-change optical disk with a superresolution (SR) near-field structure (Super-RENS) is theoretically examined on the basis of three-dimensional, full-wave vector diffraction theory. Calculations have demonstrated that Super-RENS has a high spatial resolution beyond the diffraction limit in readout. The read signal is dependent on the nature of SR, the layer structure of the disk, and the state of polarization of the incident laser beam. For the Super-RENS in which antimony is used for SR readout, the readout signal is quite small, and the estimated carrier-to-noise ratio (CNR) is only ∼30 dB for marks of 300 nm. For the Super-RENS in which a metallic region is formed during readout, the read signal is large, and the CNR can be as high as 50 dB in reading 300-nm marks.
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