A homogeneous propagating wave falling onto submicrometer objects is partially diffracted into evanescent waves. The use of a scattering probe of subwavelength size can convert the evanescent waves into homogeneous ones and make their detection possible. The resulting propagating waves can then provide information about the subwavelength object. Relations with preliminary experiments are discussed.
© 1989 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: February 15, 1989
Manuscript Accepted: June 25, 1989
Published: October 1, 1989
J. M. Vigoureux, D. Courjon, and C. Girard, "General principles of scanning tunneling optical microscopy," Opt. Lett. 14, 1039-1041 (1989)