Standard optical microscopes can image cells and bacteria but not their nanoscale features which are blurred by a physical effect called diffraction. Now, Australian researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale BioPhotonics (CNBP) report in Nature Communications a simple way to bypass diffraction limitations using standard optical imaging tools.
Researchers have developed a new self-calibrating endoscope that produces 3D images of objects smaller than a single cell. Without a lens or any optical, electrical or mechanical components, the tip of the endoscope measures just 200 microns across, about the width of a few human hairs twisted together.
Engineers at the University of Illinois have found a way to redirect misfit light waves to reduce energy loss during optical data transmission. In a study, researchers exploited an interaction between light and sound waves to suppress the scattering of light from material defects -- which could lead to improved fiber optic communication. Their findings are published in the journal Optica.
The research was dedicated to modelling light transmission throughout photonic crystals with a continuous gold layer on their surface. Photonic crystals don't pass a certain wavelength (color) of light. This is called the photonic bandgap -- the range of light wavelength where propagation through a crystal is difficult.
Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed the thinnest optical device in the world -- a waveguide that is three layers of atoms thin. The work is a proof of concept for scaling down optical devices to sizes that are orders of magnitude smaller than today's devices. It could lead to the development of higher density, higher capacity photonic chips.
Scientists have designed and tested an experimental system that uses a near-infrared laser to actively heat two gold nanorod antennae to different temperatures. The nanorods are so close together that they are both electromagnetically and thermally coupled. Yet the team measured temperature differences between the rods as high as 20 degrees Celsius and could change which nanorod was cooler and which was warmer, even though the rods were made of the same material.
A thin film that reflects light in intriguing ways could be used to make road signs that shine brightly and change color at night. The technology could help call attention to important traffic information when it's dark, with potential benefits for both drivers and pedestrians, researchers say.
Astronomers used the combined power of multiple astronomical observatories around the world and in space to discover a treasure-trove of previously unknown ancient massive galaxies. This is the first multiple discovery of its kind and such an abundance of this type of galaxy defies current models of the universe. These galaxies are also intimately connected with supermassive black holes and the distribution of dark matter.
Researchers for the first time have combined a powerful microscopy technique with automated image analysis algorithms to distinguish between healthy and metastatic cancerous tissue without relying on invasive biopsies or the use of a contrast dye. This new approach could one day help doctors detect cancer metastasis that is otherwise difficult to see via standard imaging technologies during operations.
A new study from Penn researchers found that Weyl semimetals, a class of quantum materials, have bulk quantum states whose electrical properties can be controlled using light.