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IEEE Photonics Journal


Thayer School of Engineering


We present a novel approach in designing high-throughput high-resolution apertureless near-field scanning probes with enhanced nanofocusing based on graphene plasmonics. Extremely localized plasmons on graphene are mingled with nanofocusing of surface plasmon polaritons to confine and steer the plasmon waves into the apex of a near-field scanning optical microscopy tip. The Fermi level, localized emission sites on graphene, and the angle of excitation play a critical role in exciting graphene surface plasmons on the lateral walls of the designed conical probes. The optimized probes feature full-width at half-maximum (FWHM) around 25 nm, which is at least two times smaller than conventional metallic plasmonic tips. The near-field electromagnetic properties of the designed probes are characterized in detail and compared to the conventional single-aperture and typical apertureless metallic plasmonic (silver and gold) probes. Over three orders of magnitude electric field enhancement compared to metallic probes on SiO2 substrate has been achieved.



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