Abstract

We report fluorescence imaging of colour centres in Lithium Fluoride (LiF) using an apertureless Scanning Near Field Optical Microscope (SNOM). The sample consists of periodically spaced submicrometric coloured areas F2 laser-active colour centres produced by low-energy electron beam lithography on the surface of a LiF thin film. A silicon Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) tip is used as an apertureless optical probe. AFM images show a uniform surface roughness with a RMS of 7.2 nm. The SNOM images of the red fluorescence of colour centres excited at λ=458 nm with an argon ion laser show that the local photon emission is unambiguously related to the coloured areas and that topographic artefacts can be excluded.

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  1. D. W. Pohl, W. Denk, and M. Lanz, "Optical stethoscopy : image recording with resolution lambda/20," Appl. Phys. Lett. 44, 651-653 (1984).
    [CrossRef]
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    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. A. Harootunian, E. Betzig, M. Isaacson and A. Lewis, "Super-resolution fluorescence near-field scanning microscopy," Appl. Phys. Lett. 49, 674-676 (1986).
    [CrossRef]
  4. E. Betzig and R. J. Chichester, "Single molecules observed by near-field scanning optical microscopy," Science 262, 1422-1425 (1993).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. W. P. Ambrose, P. M. Goodwin, J. C.Martin and R. A. Keller, "Single molecule detection and photochemistry on a surface using near-field optical excitation," Phys. Rev. Lett. 72, 160-163 (1994).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. F. Zenhausern, M. P. O' Boyle and H. K. Wickramasinghe, "Apertureless near-field optical microscope," Appl. Phys. Lett. 65, 1623-1625 (1994).
    [CrossRef]
  7. R. Bachelot, P. Gleyzes, and A. C. Boccara, "Near-field optical microscope based on local perturbation of a diffraction spot," Opt. Lett. 20, 1924-1926 (1995).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. Y. Inouye and S. Kawata, "Near-field scanning optical microscope using a metallic probe tip," Opt. Lett. 19, 159-161 (1994).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. B. Knoll and F. Keilmann, "Near-field probing of vibrational absorption for chemical microscopy," Nature (London) 399, 134-137 (1999).
    [CrossRef]
  10. P. M. Adam, P. Royer, R. Laddada, and J. L. Bijeon, "Apertureless near-field optical microscopy: influence of the illumination conditions on the image contrast," Appl. Opt. 37, 1814-1819 (1998).
    [CrossRef]
  11. Y. Martin, F. Zenhausern, and H. K. Wickramasinghe, "Scattering spectroscopy of molecules at nanometer resolution," Appl. Phys. Lett. 68, 2475-2477 (1996).
    [CrossRef]
  12. H. F. Hamann, A. Gallagher, D. J. Nesbitt, "Near-field fluorescence imaging by localized field enhancement near a sharp probe tip," Appl. Phys. Lett. 76, 1953-1955 (2000).
    [CrossRef]
  13. E. J. Sanchez, L. Novotny, X. S. Xie, "Near-field fluorescence microscopy based on two-photon excitation with metal tips," Phys. Rev. Lett. 82, 4014-4017 (1999).
    [CrossRef]
  14. Y. Kawata, C. Xu, W. Denk, "Feasibility of molecular-resolution fluorescence near-field microscopy using multi-photon absorption and field enhacement near a sharp tip," J. Appl. Phys. 85, 1294-1301 (1999).
    [CrossRef]
  15. N. Hayazawa, Y. Inouye, S. Kawata, "Evanescent field excitation and measurement of dye fluorescence in a metallic probe near-field scanning optical microscope," J. Microsc. 194, 472-476 (1999).
    [CrossRef]
  16. J. Azoulay, A. Debarre, A. Richard, T. Tchenio, "Field enhancement and apertureless near-field optical spectroscopy of single molecules," J. Microscop. 194, 486-490 (1999).
    [CrossRef]
  17. P. M. Adam, S. Benrezzak, J. L. Bijeon, P. Royer, "Localized surface plasmons on nanometric gold particles observed with an apertureless Scanning Near-field Optical Microscope," J. Appl. Phys. 88, 6919- 6921 (2000).
    [CrossRef]
  18. A. Belarouci, F. Menchini, H. Rigneault, B. Jacquier, R.M. Montereali, F. Somma, P. Moretti and M. Cathelinaud, "Control of F2 color centers spontaneous emission in LiF thin films inside optical microcavities," Opt. Mat. 16, 63-67 (2001).
    [CrossRef]
  19. A. Belarouci, F. Menchini, H. Rigneault, B. Jacquier, R.M. Montereali, F. Somma, P. Moretti, "Spontaneous emission properties of color centers based optical microcavities," Optics Comm. 189, 281-287 (2001).
    [CrossRef]
  20. T. T. Basiev, S. B. Mirov, V. V. Osiko, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 24, 1052 (1988)
    [CrossRef]
  21. R. M. Montereali, G. Baldacchini, L. C. Scavarda do Carma, "LiF films : absorption and luminescence of colour centres," Thin Film Solids 201, 106-108 (1991)
    [CrossRef]
  22. Silicon-MDT Ltd., Zelenograd Research Institute of Physical Problems, 103460, Moscow, Russia.
  23. P. M. Adam, J. L. Bijeon, G. Viardot, P. Royer, "Analysis of the influence of the tip vibration in the formation of images in apertureless Scanning Near-field Optical Microscopy," Opt. Commun. 174, 91-98 (2000).
    [CrossRef]
  24. J. N. Walford, J. A. Porto, R. Carminati, J. J. Greffet, P. M. Adam, S. Hudlet, J. L. Bijeon, A. Staschkevich, P. Royer, Influence of tip modulation on image formation in scanning near-field optical microscopy," J. Appl. Phys. 89, 5159-5169 (2001).
    [CrossRef]
  25. D. Barchiesi, O. Bergossi, M. Spajer, C. Pieralli. "Image resolution in reflection scanning near-field optical microscopy using shear force feedback : characterization with a spline and Fourier spectrum," Appl. Opt. 36, 2171-2177 (1997).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  26. B. Hecht, H. Bielefeldt, Y. Inouye, D. W. Pohl, L. Novotny, "Facts and artefacts in near-field optical microscopy," J. Appl. Phys. 81, 2492-2497 (1997).
    [CrossRef]
  27. G. Wurtz, R. Bachelot, P. Royer, "Imaging a GaAlAs laser diode in operation using apertureless scanning near-field optical microscopy," Eur. Phys. J.: Appl. Phys. 5, 269-275 (1999).
    [CrossRef]
  28. R. Hillenbrand, F. Keilmann, "Complex optical constants on a subwavelength scale," Phys. Rev. Lett. 85, 3029-3032 (2000).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]

Other

D. W. Pohl, W. Denk, and M. Lanz, "Optical stethoscopy : image recording with resolution lambda/20," Appl. Phys. Lett. 44, 651-653 (1984).
[CrossRef]

E. Betzig, J. K. Trautman, T. D. Harris, J. S. Weiner, and R. L. Kostelak, "Breaking the diffraction barrier: optical microscopy on nanometric scale," Science 251, 1468-1470 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

A. Harootunian, E. Betzig, M. Isaacson and A. Lewis, "Super-resolution fluorescence near-field scanning microscopy," Appl. Phys. Lett. 49, 674-676 (1986).
[CrossRef]

E. Betzig and R. J. Chichester, "Single molecules observed by near-field scanning optical microscopy," Science 262, 1422-1425 (1993).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

W. P. Ambrose, P. M. Goodwin, J. C.Martin and R. A. Keller, "Single molecule detection and photochemistry on a surface using near-field optical excitation," Phys. Rev. Lett. 72, 160-163 (1994).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

F. Zenhausern, M. P. O' Boyle and H. K. Wickramasinghe, "Apertureless near-field optical microscope," Appl. Phys. Lett. 65, 1623-1625 (1994).
[CrossRef]

R. Bachelot, P. Gleyzes, and A. C. Boccara, "Near-field optical microscope based on local perturbation of a diffraction spot," Opt. Lett. 20, 1924-1926 (1995).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Y. Inouye and S. Kawata, "Near-field scanning optical microscope using a metallic probe tip," Opt. Lett. 19, 159-161 (1994).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

B. Knoll and F. Keilmann, "Near-field probing of vibrational absorption for chemical microscopy," Nature (London) 399, 134-137 (1999).
[CrossRef]

P. M. Adam, P. Royer, R. Laddada, and J. L. Bijeon, "Apertureless near-field optical microscopy: influence of the illumination conditions on the image contrast," Appl. Opt. 37, 1814-1819 (1998).
[CrossRef]

Y. Martin, F. Zenhausern, and H. K. Wickramasinghe, "Scattering spectroscopy of molecules at nanometer resolution," Appl. Phys. Lett. 68, 2475-2477 (1996).
[CrossRef]

H. F. Hamann, A. Gallagher, D. J. Nesbitt, "Near-field fluorescence imaging by localized field enhancement near a sharp probe tip," Appl. Phys. Lett. 76, 1953-1955 (2000).
[CrossRef]

E. J. Sanchez, L. Novotny, X. S. Xie, "Near-field fluorescence microscopy based on two-photon excitation with metal tips," Phys. Rev. Lett. 82, 4014-4017 (1999).
[CrossRef]

Y. Kawata, C. Xu, W. Denk, "Feasibility of molecular-resolution fluorescence near-field microscopy using multi-photon absorption and field enhacement near a sharp tip," J. Appl. Phys. 85, 1294-1301 (1999).
[CrossRef]

N. Hayazawa, Y. Inouye, S. Kawata, "Evanescent field excitation and measurement of dye fluorescence in a metallic probe near-field scanning optical microscope," J. Microsc. 194, 472-476 (1999).
[CrossRef]

J. Azoulay, A. Debarre, A. Richard, T. Tchenio, "Field enhancement and apertureless near-field optical spectroscopy of single molecules," J. Microscop. 194, 486-490 (1999).
[CrossRef]

P. M. Adam, S. Benrezzak, J. L. Bijeon, P. Royer, "Localized surface plasmons on nanometric gold particles observed with an apertureless Scanning Near-field Optical Microscope," J. Appl. Phys. 88, 6919- 6921 (2000).
[CrossRef]

A. Belarouci, F. Menchini, H. Rigneault, B. Jacquier, R.M. Montereali, F. Somma, P. Moretti and M. Cathelinaud, "Control of F2 color centers spontaneous emission in LiF thin films inside optical microcavities," Opt. Mat. 16, 63-67 (2001).
[CrossRef]

A. Belarouci, F. Menchini, H. Rigneault, B. Jacquier, R.M. Montereali, F. Somma, P. Moretti, "Spontaneous emission properties of color centers based optical microcavities," Optics Comm. 189, 281-287 (2001).
[CrossRef]

T. T. Basiev, S. B. Mirov, V. V. Osiko, IEEE J. Quantum Electron. 24, 1052 (1988)
[CrossRef]

R. M. Montereali, G. Baldacchini, L. C. Scavarda do Carma, "LiF films : absorption and luminescence of colour centres," Thin Film Solids 201, 106-108 (1991)
[CrossRef]

Silicon-MDT Ltd., Zelenograd Research Institute of Physical Problems, 103460, Moscow, Russia.

P. M. Adam, J. L. Bijeon, G. Viardot, P. Royer, "Analysis of the influence of the tip vibration in the formation of images in apertureless Scanning Near-field Optical Microscopy," Opt. Commun. 174, 91-98 (2000).
[CrossRef]

J. N. Walford, J. A. Porto, R. Carminati, J. J. Greffet, P. M. Adam, S. Hudlet, J. L. Bijeon, A. Staschkevich, P. Royer, Influence of tip modulation on image formation in scanning near-field optical microscopy," J. Appl. Phys. 89, 5159-5169 (2001).
[CrossRef]

D. Barchiesi, O. Bergossi, M. Spajer, C. Pieralli. "Image resolution in reflection scanning near-field optical microscopy using shear force feedback : characterization with a spline and Fourier spectrum," Appl. Opt. 36, 2171-2177 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

B. Hecht, H. Bielefeldt, Y. Inouye, D. W. Pohl, L. Novotny, "Facts and artefacts in near-field optical microscopy," J. Appl. Phys. 81, 2492-2497 (1997).
[CrossRef]

G. Wurtz, R. Bachelot, P. Royer, "Imaging a GaAlAs laser diode in operation using apertureless scanning near-field optical microscopy," Eur. Phys. J.: Appl. Phys. 5, 269-275 (1999).
[CrossRef]

R. Hillenbrand, F. Keilmann, "Complex optical constants on a subwavelength scale," Phys. Rev. Lett. 85, 3029-3032 (2000).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

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Figures (3)

FIG. 1.
FIG. 1.

SNOM experimental setup

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

AFM image of the surface of a 2,4 µm thick LiF film thermally evaporated on a glass substrate

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

SNOM image of the surface of a 2,4 µm thick LiF film thermally evaporated on a glass substrate

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