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Optics Letters

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  • Vol. 24, Iss. 9 — May. 1, 1999
  • pp: 581–583

A single molecule as a probe of optical intensity distribution

J. Michaelis, C. Hettich, A. Zayats, B. Eiermann, J. Mlynek, and V. Sandoghdar  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Letters, Vol. 24, Issue 9, pp. 581-583 (1999)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OL.24.000581


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Abstract

Single terrylene molecules embedded in microscopic p-terphenyl crystals are identified with the technique of fluorescence excitation spectroscopy. By use of the architecture of a scanning-probe microscope at T = 1.4 K , a single molecule is scanned through an excitation laser beam while the fluorescence signal is recorded. In this manner we have mapped the intensity distribution in a one-dimensional optical standing wave, demonstrating the potential of a single molecule as a nanometric probe. We discuss future experiments aimed at combining the high spatial and spectral sensitivity of a single molecule.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(020.0020) Atomic and molecular physics : Atomic and molecular physics
(180.2520) Microscopy : Fluorescence microscopy
(180.3170) Microscopy : Interference microscopy
(180.5810) Microscopy : Scanning microscopy
(260.3160) Physical optics : Interference

Citation
J. Michaelis, C. Hettich, A. Zayats, B. Eiermann, J. Mlynek, and V. Sandoghdar, "A single molecule as a probe of optical intensity distribution," Opt. Lett. 24, 581-583 (1999)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/ol/abstract.cfm?URI=ol-24-9-581


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