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Journal of the Optical Society of America A

Journal of the Optical Society of America A


  • Editor: Stephen A. Burns
  • Vol. 25, Iss. 4 — Apr. 1, 2008
  • pp: 911–918

Image fidelity for single-layer and multi-layer silver superlenses

Ciaran P. Moore, Matthew D. Arnold, Philip J. Bones, and Richard J. Blaikie  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA A, Vol. 25, Issue 4, pp. 911-918 (2008)

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In response to increasing interest in the area of subdiffraction-limited near-field imaging, the performance of several different realizable and theoretical superresolving silver-based lenses is simulated for a variety of different input object profiles. A computationally-efficient T-matrix technique is used to model the lenses, which consist of layers of silver with total width of 40 nm sandwiched between layers of polymethyl methacrylate and silicon dioxide. The lenses are exposed to nonperiodic bright- and dark-slit input patterns, with feature size varied between 1 nm and 2.5 μ m . The performance of the lenses is characterized in terms of transfer function, contrast profile, error profile, and input-to-output correlation. It is shown that increasing the number of layers in a lens increases the lens’ transmission coefficients at high spatial frequencies; however, this does not always lead to better imaging performance. The main reasons for this are lens-specific resonances that distort features at certain spatial frequencies, and the increased attenuation of the DC component of transmitted images, which reduces image fidelity, particularly for dark-line features. This suggests that, to achieve optimum results, the design of the superresolving lens system should take into account the characteristics of the images that it is expected to transmit.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(110.3000) Imaging systems : Image quality assessment
(050.1755) Diffraction and gratings : Computational electromagnetic methods
(160.3918) Materials : Metamaterials
(110.3925) Imaging systems : Metrics
(050.6624) Diffraction and gratings : Subwavelength structures

ToC Category:
Imaging Systems

Original Manuscript: October 16, 2007
Manuscript Accepted: February 5, 2008
Published: March 21, 2008

Ciaran P. Moore, Matthew D. Arnold, Philip J. Bones, and Richard J. Blaikie, "Image fidelity for single-layer and multi-layer silver superlenses," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 25, 911-918 (2008)

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