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Title: Planar super-oscillatory lens for sub-diffraction optical needles at violet wavelengths
Authors: Yuan, Guanghui
Rogers, Edward T. F.
Roy, Tapashree
Adamo, Giorgio
Shen, Zexiang
Zheludev, Nikolay I.
Keywords: DRNTU::Science::Physics::Optics and light
Issue Date: 2014
Source: Yuan, G., Rogers, E. T. F., Roy, T., Adamo, G., Shen, Z., & Zheludev, N. I. (2014). Planar super-oscillatory lens for sub-diffraction optical needles at violet wavelengths. Scientific reports, 4.
Series/Report no.: Scientific reports
Abstract: Planar optical lenses are fundamental elements of miniaturized photonic devices. However, conventional planar optical lenses are constrained by the diffraction limit in the optical far-field due to the band-limited wavevectors supported by free-space and loss of high-spatial-frequency evanescent components. As inspired by Einstein's radiation ‘needle stick’, electromagnetic energy can be delivered into an arbitrarily small solid angle. Such sub-diffraction optical needles have been numerically investigated using diffractive optical elements (DOEs) together with specially polarized optical beams, but experimental demonstration is extremely difficult due to the bulky size of DOEs and the required alignment precision. Planar super-oscillatory lenses (SOLs) were proposed to overcome these constraints and demonstrated that sub-diffraction focal spots can actually be formed without any evanescent waves, making far-field, label-free super-resolution imaging possible. Here we extend the super-oscillation concept into the vectorial-field regime to work with circularly polarized light, and experimentally demonstrate, for the first time, a circularly polarized optical needle with sub-diffraction transverse spot size (0.45λ) and axial long depth of focus (DOF) of 15λ using a planar SOL at a violet wavelength of 405 nm. This sub-diffraction circularly polarized optical needle has potential applications in circular dichroism spectroscopy, super-resolution imaging, high-density optical storage, heat-assisted magnetic recording, nano-manufacturing and nano-metrology.
ISSN: 2045-2322
DOI: 10.1038/srep06333
Rights: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder in order to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SPMS Journal Articles

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