Photon Tunneling Microscopy of Polymers

  • John M. Guerra
  • Mohan Srinivasarao
  • Alex Hsieh


The photon tunneling microscope (PTM) can image polymer surface morphology with vertical resolution below a nanometer and lateral resolution of 0.10 μm. PTM produces visual, whole-field tunneling images as well as real-time high resolution three-dimensional images with continuous interactive perspective, ready for stereopsis. In addition, surfaces are imaged without metallization, shadowing, vacuum, electrons, or scanning probes. A brief review of the theory, instrumentation, and features of photon tunneling microscopy is presented. Applications of PTM to such diverse polymeric surfaces as polystyrene sphere structures, single polyethylene crystals, silicon dioxide thin films on polycarbonate, and a real-time dewetting study of polystyrene at the glass transition temperature are presented and briefly discussed.


Scanning Probe Lateral Resolution Evanescent Wave Polystyrene Sphere Optical Barrier 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • John M. Guerra
    • 1
  • Mohan Srinivasarao
    • 2
  • Alex Hsieh
    • 3
  1. 1.Optical Engineering DepartmentPolaroid CorporationCambridgeUSA
  2. 2.University of Massachusetts Polymer Science DepartmentAmherstUSA
  3. 3.Materials Technology LaboratoryU. S. Army Laboratory CommandWatertownUSA

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