Tomsk scientists have proposed a simple way to control a photon jet


Researchers at Tomsk Polytechnic University, working together with specialists from the National Yang-Ming Jiao Dong University (Taiwan), have found a simple way to control a photon jet - a beam of light focused on a very small local area. The photonic jet effect is at the heart of modern microscopes. Using a new way of controlling the jet, you can speed up and simplify working with microscopes and increase the depth of field without sacrificing scan quality.

“Today's high-power optical microscopes nanoscopes with a resolution of up to 200 nanometers have small spheres of glass in their construction. The sphere focuses on the radiation, while itself is in the focus of the lens. Due to this, multiple increases occur. But imagine, in order to see the new area of ​​the object by its depth, now move the stand with the object itself. This reduces the quality of the study and takes time. We proposed to move the photonic jet itself using two metal screens thin aluminum plates, - this is how Oleg Minin, professor of the electronic engineering department of the TPU School of Non-Destructive Testing and Safety, project manager, described the essence of the innovation.

Clarifying that the experiments were carried out not with a sphere, but with a dielectric polymer cube only four micrometers in size, the scientists assure that the results obtained are applicable to the sphere.

The plates were placed on the sides of the cube. When these metal screens were moved, the photon jet was also displaced. At the same time, we recorded that the length and width of the generated photonic jets were almost halved in the presence of a screen, which in the future will allow changing both its resolution and the focus position during the operation of the microscope. And the resolution of the photonic jet has increased by a factor of 1.2. In addition, by changing the width of the plates, you can dynamically change the focal length of the jet, that is, scan the focusing area in-depth, view objects in the third dimension, the scientist explained.

The advantages of the new solution include the ability to automate the movement of screens and low cost. The second factor makes it possible to use dielectric cubes to obtain the effect of a photonic jet not only in microscopes but also in modern optical integrated circuits, optical switches, lithographic equipment, etc.

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