OSA's Digital Library

Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Michael Duncan
  • Vol. 14, Iss. 23 — Nov. 13, 2006
  • pp: 11222–11233

Spectroscopic near-field microscopy using frequency combs in the mid-infrared

Markus Brehm, Albert Schliesser, and Fritz Keilmann  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 14, Issue 23, pp. 11222-11233 (2006)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (375 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



We introduce a new concept of spectroscopic near-field optical microscopy that records broad infrared spectra at each pixel during scanning. Two coherent beams with harmonic frequency-comb spectra are employed, one for illuminating the scanning tip, the other as reference for multi-heterodyne detection of the scattered light. Our implementation yields 200 cm-1 wide amplitude and phase spectra centered at 950 cm-1 (this band can be tuned between 700 and 1400 cm-1). We introduce a new technique of background suppression enabled by the short, 10 µs “snapshot” acquisition of infrared spectra which allows time-resolving the tapping motion. Thus we demonstrate broad-band mid-infrared near-field imaging that is essentially free of background artefacts.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(180.5810) Microscopy : Scanning microscopy
(240.6490) Optics at surfaces : Spectroscopy, surface
(290.1350) Scattering : Backscattering
(290.5870) Scattering : Scattering, Rayleigh
(300.6300) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, Fourier transforms
(300.6310) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, heterodyne

ToC Category:

Original Manuscript: August 1, 2006
Revised Manuscript: September 28, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: September 30, 2006
Published: November 13, 2006

Virtual Issues
Vol. 1, Iss. 12 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Markus Brehm, Albert Schliesser, and Fritz Keilmann, "Spectroscopic near-field microscopy using frequency combs in the mid-infrared," Opt. Express 14, 11222-11233 (2006)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. J. Wessel, "Surface-enhanced optical microscopy," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 2, 1538-1540 (1985). [CrossRef]
  2. F. Zenhausern, Y. Martin, and H. Wickramasinghe, "Scanning interferometric apertureless microscopy: optical imaging at 10 Angstrom resolution," Science 269, 1083-1085 (1995). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. R. Hillenbrand and F. Keilmann, "Complex optical constants on a subwavelength scale," Phys. Rev. Lett. 85, 3029-3032 (2000). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. A. Lahrech, R. Bachelot, P. Gleyzes, and A. C. Boccara, "Infrared-reflection-mode near-field microscopy using an apertureless probe with a resolution of ⌊ /600," Opt. Lett. 21, 1315-1317 (1996). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. B. Knoll and F. Keilmann, "Near-field probing of vibrational absorption for chemical microscopy," Nature 399, 134-137 (1999). [CrossRef]
  6. B. Knoll and F. Keilmann, "Infrared conductivity mapping for nanoelectronics," Appl. Phys. Lett. 77, 3980-3982 (2000). [CrossRef]
  7. R. Hillenbrand, T. Taubner, and F. Keilmann, "Phonon-enhanced light-matter interaction at the nanometre scale," Nature 418, 159-162 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. T. Taubner, R. Hillenbrand, and F. Keilmann, "Nanoscale polymer recognition by spectral signature in scattering infrared near-field microscopy," Appl. Phys. Lett. 85, 5064-5066 (2004). [CrossRef]
  9. A. Huber, N. Ocelic, T. Taubner, and R. Hillenbrand, "Nanoscale resolved infrared probing of crystal structure and of plasmon-phonon coupling," Nanoletters 6, 774-778 (2006). [CrossRef]
  10. R. Stöckle, Y. Suh, V. Deckert, and R. Zenobi, "Nanoscale chemical analysis by tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy," Chem. Phys. Lett. 318, 131-136 (2000). [CrossRef]
  11. A. Hartschuh, E. Sanchez, X. Xie, and L. Novotny, "High-resolution near-field Raman microscopy of singlewalled carbon nanotubes," Phys. Rev. Lett. 90, 095503-1-4 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  12. M. Brehm, T. Taubner, R. Hillenbrand, and F. Keilmann, "Infrared spectroscopic mapping of single nanoparticles and viruses at nanoscale resolution," Nanoletters 6, 1307-1310 (2006). [CrossRef]
  13. F. Formanek, Y. DeWilde, L. Aigouy, W.K. Kwok, L. Paulius, and Y. Chen, "Nanometer-scale probing of optical and thermal near-fields with an apertureless NSOM," Superlattices and Microstructures 35, 315-323 (2004). [CrossRef]
  14. F. Keilmann and R. Hillenbrand, "Near-field microscopy by elastic light scattering from a tip," Philos. Trans. R. Soc. London A 362, 787-805 (2004). [CrossRef]
  15. C. Fischer and M. W. Siegrist, "Mid-IR difference frequency generation," in Solid-state mid-infrared laser sources, I. Sorokina and K. Vodopyanov, eds., pp. 97-140 (Springer, Berlin, 2003).
  16. T. Udem, R. Holzwarth, and T. W. H¨ansch, "Optical frequency metrology," Nature 416, 233-237 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  17. D. van der Weide and F. Keilmann, "Coherent periodically pulsed radiation spectrometer," US patent 5748309 (filed Oct. 20, 1994) (1998).
  18. F. Keilmann, C. Gohle, and R. Holzwarth, "Time-domain mid-infrared frequency-comb spectrometer," Opt. Lett. 29, 1542-1544 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  19. P. Elzinga, R. Kneisler, F. Lytle, Y. Jiang, G. King, and N. Lauredeau, "Pump/probe method for fast analysis of visible spectral signatures utilizing asynchronous optical sampling," Appl. Opt. 26, 4303-4309 (1987). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  20. T. Yasui, E. Saneyoshi, and T. Araki, "Asynchronous optical sampling terahertz time-domain spectroscopy for ultrahigh spectral resolution and rapid data acquisition," Appl. Phys. Lett. 87, 61101-1-3 (2005). [CrossRef]
  21. A. Bartels, A. Thoma, C. Janke, T. Dekorsy, A. Dreyhaupt, S. Winnerl, and M. Helm, "High-resolution THz spectrometer with kHz scan rates," Opt. Express 14, 430-437 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  22. F. Keilmann, A. Schliesser, M. Brehm, and N. Ocelic, "Verfahren und Vorrichtung zur Abtastung von sich periodisch wiederholenden Ereignissen," German patent DE102005050151 (filed Oct. 10, 2005) (2006).
  23. A. Schliesser, M. Brehm, and F. Keilmann, "Frequency-comb infrared spectrometer for rapid, remote chemical sensing," Opt. Express 13, 9029-9038 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  24. C. Kübler, R. Huber, S. T¨ubel, and A. Leitenstorfer, "Ultrabroadband detection of multi-terahertz field transients with GaSe electro-optic sensors: Approaching the near infrared," Appl. Phys. Lett. 85, 3360-3362 (2004). [CrossRef]
  25. M. Zimmermann, C. Gohle, R. Holzwarth, T. Udem, and T . Hünsch, "Optical clockwork with an offset-free difference-frequency comb: accuracy of sum- and difference-frequency generation," Opt. Lett. 29,310-312 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  26. D. van der Weide, J. Murakowski, and F. Keilmann, "Gas-absorption spectroscopy with electronic Terahertz techniques," IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory Tech. 48, 740-743 (2000). [CrossRef]
  27. B. Knoll and F. Keilmann, "Enhanced dielectric contrast in scattering-type scanning near-field optical microscopy," Opt. Commun. 182, 321-328 (2000). [CrossRef]
  28. P. G. Gucciardi, G. Bachelier, and M. Allegrini, "Far-field background suppression in tip-modulated apertureless near-field optical microscopy," J. Appl. Phys. 99, 124309-1-9 (2006). [CrossRef]
  29. N. Ocelic, A. Huber, and R. Hillenbrand, "Pseudo-heterodyne detection for background-free near-field spectroscopy," Appl. Phys. Lett. 89, 101124-1-3 (2006). [CrossRef]
  30. T. Taubner, R. Hillenbrand, and F. Keilmann, "Performance of visible and mid-infrared scattering-type near-field optical microscopes," J. Microsc. 210, 311-314 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  31. R. Kaindl, F. Eickemeyer, M. Woerner, and T. Elsaesser, "Broadband phase-matched difference frequency mixing of femtosecond pulses in GaSe: Experiment and theory," Appl. Phys. Lett. 75, 1060-1062 (1999). [CrossRef]
  32. R. Huber, A. Brodschelm, F. Tauser, and A. Leitenstorfer, "Generation and field-resolved detection of femtosecond electromagnetic pulses tunable up to 41 THz," Appl. Phys. Lett. 76, 3191-3193 (2000). [CrossRef]
  33. A. Kulibekov, K. Allakhverdiev, D. Guseinova, E. Salaev, and O. Baran, "Optical absorption in GaSe under high-density ultrashort laser pulses," Opt. Commun. 239, 193-198 (2004). [CrossRef]
  34. A. Schliesser, "Multiheterodyn-Spektroskopie mit Frequenzk¨ammen im mittleren Infrarot," Diplomarbeit, Technische Universität München (2005).
  35. R. Hillenbrand and F. Keilmann, "Material-specific mapping of metal/semiconductor/dielectric nanosystems at 10 nm resolution by back-scattering near-field optical microscopy," Appl. Phys. Lett. 80, 25-27 (2002). [CrossRef]
  36. T. Taubner, F. Keilmann, and R. Hillenbrand, "Nanomechanical resonance tuning and phase effects in optical near-field interaction," Nanoletters 4, 1669-1672 (2004). [CrossRef]
  37. N. Ocelic and R. Hillenbrand, "Subwavelength-scale tailoring of surface phonon polaritons by focused ion-beam implementation," Nature Materials 3, 606-609 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  38. R. Hillenbrand, B. Knoll, and F. Keilmann, "Pure optical contrast in scattering-type scanning near-field optical microscopy," J. Microsc. 202, 77-83 (2001). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  39. A. Semenov, G. Goltsman, and R. Sobolewski, "Hot-electron effect in superconductors and its applications for radiation sensors," Supercond. Sci. Technol. 15, R1-R16 (2002). [CrossRef]
  40. A. Korneev, P. Kouminov, V. Matvienko, G. Chulkova, K. Smirnov, B. Voronov, G. Goltsman, M. Currie, W. Lo, K. Wilsher, J. Zhang,W. Slysz, A. Pearlman, A. Verevkin, and R. Sobolewski, "Sensitivity and gigahertz counting performance of NbN superconducting single-photon detectors," Appl. Phys. Lett. 84, 5338-5340 (2004). [CrossRef]
  41. K. Liu, J. Xu, and X. Zhang, "GaSe crystals for broadband terahertz wave detection," Appl. Phys. Lett. 85, 863-865 (2004). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited