In this article, we reported near-field research on azobenzene polymer liquid crystal films using scanning near-field optical microscopy (SNOM). Optical writing and subsequently topographic reading of the patterns with subwavelength resolution were carried out in our experiments. Nanometer scale dots and lines were successfully fabricated on the films and the smallest dot diameter is about 120 nm. The width of the line fabricated is about 250 nm. This method is also a choice for nanolithography. The mechanism of the surface deformation on the polymer films was briefly analyzed from the viewpoint of gradient force in the optical near field. The intensity distribution of the electric field near the tip aperture was numerically simulated using finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method and the numerical simulation results were consistent with the experimental results.
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