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The fundamental parameters and limitations that determine the signal strength in tip-enhanced Raman scattering (TERS) are discussed. A semiquantitative analysis of the Raman signal expected in different experimental geometries and with different sample systems is presented, taking into account experimental parameters including Fresnel factor, numerical(More)
We describe and demonstrate a new nanometer-scale broadband light source. It is based on the grating-coupled excitation of surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) on the shaft of a sharp conical metal taper with a tip radius of few tens of nanometers. Far-field excitation of linear nanoslit gratings results in the resonant generation of SPPs traveling over more(More)
Nanodomains formed by microphase separation in thin films of the diblock copolymers poly(styrene-b-2-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P2VP) and poly(styrene-b-ethyleneoxide) (PS-b-PEO) were imaged by means of infrared scattering-type near-field microscopy. When probing at 3.39 mum (2950 cm(-1)), contrast is obtained due to spectral differences between the C--H(More)
The spectroscopic characterization of biomolecular structures requires nanometer spatial resolution and chemical specificity. We perform full spatio-spectral imaging of dried purple membrane patches purified from Halobacterium salinarum with infrared vibrational scattering-type scanning near-field optical microscopy (s-SNOM). Using near-field spectral phase(More)
The optical local-field enhancement on nanometer length scales provides the basis for plasmonic metal nanostructures to serve as molecular sensors and as nanophotonic devices. However, particle morphology and the associated surface plasmon resonance alone do not uniquely reflect the important details of the local field distribution. Here, we use(More)
The dynamics of excitons in individual semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes was studied using time-resolved photoluminescence (PL) spectroscopy. The PL decay from tubes of the same (n,m) type was found to be monoexponential, however, with lifetimes varying between less than 20 and 200 ps from tube to tube. Competition of nonradiative decay of(More)
Focusing light to subwavelength dimensions has been a long-standing desire in optics but has remained challenging, even with new strategies based on near-field effects, polaritons, and metamaterials. The adiabatic propagation of surface plasmon polaritons (SPP) on a conical taper as proposed theoretically has recently emerged as particularly promising to(More)
In addition to the electric field E(r), the associated magnetic field H(r) and current density J(r) characterize any electromagnetic device, providing insight into antenna coupling and mutual impedance. We demonstrate the optical analogue of the radio frequency vector network analyzer implemented in interferometric homodyne scattering-type scanning(More)
While scattering-scanning near-field optical microscopy (s-SNOM) has demonstrated its potential to extend infrared (IR) spectroscopy into the nanometer scale, it has not yet reached its full potential in terms of spectroscopic sensitivity. We combine broadband femtosecond mid-IR excitation with an optimized spectral irradiance of ∼2 W/cm(2)/ cm(-1)(More)
Optical antennas can enhance the coupling between free-space propagating light and the localized excitation of nanoscopic light emitters or receivers, thus forming the basis of many nanophotonic applications. Their functionality relies on an understanding of the relationship between the geometric parameters and the resulting near-field antenna modes. Using(More)