Optical Characterization of Ultrathin Polymer Films by Evanescent Light

Part of the TEUBNER-TEXTE zur Physik book series (TTZP)


This paper describes the use of evanescent light for the optical characterization of polymer thin films and interfaces. Firstly, a few basic concepts of evanescent wave phenomena, including total internal reflection, plasmon surface polaritons and guided optical modes, are reviewed. It is shown that the excitation of these waves allows for a sensitive determination of the optical architecture of the interface(s) involved. This “surface light” can then be used for the same broad range of optical techniques as it is known from experimental set-ups designed for the investigation of various optical properties of polymer samples using plane electromagnetic waves, i.e. “normal” photons. This is demonstrated for diffraction experiments and microscopic investigations. The examples given include thin polymer films prepared by spin-coating or by the Langmuir-Blodgett-Kuhn technique.


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Copyright information

© B. G. Teubner Verlagsgesellschaft Leipzig 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Frontier Research ProgramThe Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (RIKEN)Wako, SaitamaJapan
  2. 2.Max-Planck-Institut für PolymerforschungMainzGermany
  3. 3.Angewandte PhysikHoechst AGFrankfurt 80Germany

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