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News & Highlights

Research Highlights

Published: Mon, 03/20/2017 - 3:30pm

Dennis Gardner and his coworkers in the Kapteyn-Murnane group accomplished two major breakthroughs in imaging tiny structures much too small to be seen with visible light microscopes: (1) for the first time in the extreme ultraviolet (EUV) or soft X-ray region, they achieved a resolution smaller than the wavelength of the light; and (2) for the first time, they obtained high resolution quantitative imaging of near periodic tiny objects (structures with repetitive features).

To accomplish these breakthroughs, the team used coherent diffractive imaging (CDI), which amazingly does not require any optical components such as lenses or mirrors. At EUV wavelengths, optical components are difficult to make and typically cause substantial loss of EUV light. The team also surpassed results typically available only at enormous and expensive research facilities, such as synchrotrons and free electron lasers, by using only tabletop lasers and imaging systems. EUV imaging can provide simultaneous information about chemical composition as well as structure, crucial to understanding nanoelectronic devices, advanced materials, and biological samples. The Kapteyn-Murnane group has just...

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