A microwave near field microscope has a novel microwave probe structure wherein the probing field of evanescent radiation is emitted from a sharpened metal tip instead of an aperture or gap. This sharpened tip, which is electrically and mechanically connected to a central electrode, extends through and beyond an aperture in an endwall of a microwave resonating device such as a microwave cavity resonator or a microwave stripline resonator. Since the field intensity at the tip increases as the tip sharpens, the total energy which is radiated from the tip and absorbed by the sample increases as the tip sharpens. The result is improved spatial resolution without sacrificing sensitivity.
The invention described herein arose in the course of, or under, Contract No. DE-AC03-SF00098 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The Government may have rights to the invention.