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Publications by
Dr. Silvio Fuchs

All publications of HI Jena


S. Fuchs, J. Abel, J. Nathanael, J. Reinhard, F. Wiesner, M. Wuensche, S. Skruszewicz, C. Roedel, D. Born, H. Schmidt, and G. Paulus
Photon counting of extreme ultraviolet high harmonics using a superconducting nanowire single-photon detector
Applied Physics B 128, 26 (2022)

Abstract: Laser-driven light sources in the extreme ultraviolet range (EUV) enable nanoscopic imaging with unique label-free elemental contrast. However, to fully exploit the unique properties of these new sources, novel detection schemes need to be developed. Here, we show in a proof-of-concept experiment that superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors (SNSPD) can be utilized to enable photon counting of a laser-driven EUV source based on high harmonic generation (HHG). These detectors are dark-count free and accommodate very high count rates-a perfect match for high repetition rate HHG sources. In addition to the advantages of SNSPDs for classical imaging applications with laser-driven EUV sources, the ability to count single photons paves the way for very promising applications in quantum optics and quantum imaging with high energetic radiation like, e.g., quantum ghost imaging with nanoscale resolution.


S. Skruszewicz, S. Fuchs, J. J. Abel, J. Nathanael, J. Reinhard, C. Rödel, F. Wiesner, M. Wuensche, P. Wachulak, A. Bartnik, K. Janulewicz, H. Fiedorowicz, and G. G. Paulus
Coherence tomography with broad bandwidth extreme ultraviolet and soft X-ray radiation
Applied Physics B 127, 55 (2021)

Abstract: We present an overview of recent results on optical coherence tomography with the use of extreme ultraviolet and soft X-ray radiation (XCT). XCT is a cross-sectional imaging method that has emerged as a derivative of optical coherence tomography (OCT). In contrast to OCT, which typically uses near-infrared light, XCT utilizes broad bandwidth extreme ultraviolet (XUV) and soft X-ray (SXR) radiation (Fuchs et al in Sci Rep 6:20658, 2016). As in OCT, XCT\textquotesingle s axial resolution only scales with the coherence length of the light source. Thus, an axial resolution down to the nanometer range can be achieved. This is an improvement of up to three orders of magnitude in comparison to OCT. XCT measures the reflected spectrum in a common-path interferometric setup to retrieve the axial structure of nanometer-sized samples. The technique has been demonstrated with broad bandwidth XUV/SXR radiation from synchrotron facilities and recently with compact laboratory-based laser-driven sources. Axial resolutions down to 2.2 nm have been achieved experimentally. XCT has potential applications in three-dimensional imaging of silicon-based semiconductors, lithography masks, and layered structures like XUV mirrors and solar cells.

F. Wiesner, M. Wünsche, J. Reinhard, J. Abel, J. Nathanael, S. Skruszewicz, C. Rödel, S. Yulin, A. Gawlik, G. Schmidl, U. Huebner, J. Plentz, G. Paulus, and S. Fuchs
Material-specific imaging of nanolayers using extreme ultraviolet coherence tomography
Optica 8, 230 (2021)

Abstract: Scientific and technological progress depend substantially on the ability to image on the nanoscale. In order to investigate complex, functional, nanoscopic structures like, e.g., semiconductor devices, multilayer optics, or stacks of 2D materials, the imaging techniques not only have to provide images but should also provide quantitative information. We report the material-specific characterization of nanoscopic buried structures with extreme ultraviolet coherence tomography. The method is demonstrated at a laser-driven broadband extreme ultraviolet radiation source, based on high-harmonic generation. We show that, besides nanoscopic axial resolution, the spectral reflectivity of all layers in a sample can be obtained using algorithmic phase reconstruction. This provides localized, spectroscopic, material-specific information of the sample. The method can be applied in, e.g., semiconductor production, lithographic mask inspection, or quality control of multilayer fabrication. Moreover, it paves the way for the investigation of ultrafast nanoscopic effects at functional buried interfaces. Published by The Optical Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


S. Fuchs, F. Wiesner, M. Wünsche, J. Nathanael, J. Abel, J. Reinhard, C. Rodel, and G. Paulus
Quantitative nanoscale coherence tomography with extreme ultraviolet light

Abstract: We present nanoscale coherence tomography (XCT) in the extreme ultraviolet range driven by a high-harmonic generation (HHG) light source. Using a novel phase retrieval algorithm, XCT enables non-destructive, quantitative, cross-sectional imaging, of, e.g., semiconductor devices.


J. Nathanael, M. Wünsche, S. Fuchs, T. Weber, J. Abel, J. Reinhard, F. Wiesner, U. Hübner, S. Skruszewicz, G. Paulus, and C. Rödel
Laboratory setup for extreme ultraviolet coherence tomography driven by a high-harmonic source
Review of Scientific Instruments 90, 113702 (2019)

Abstract: We present a laboratory beamline dedicated to nanoscale subsurface imaging using extreme ultraviolet coherence tomography (XCT). In this setup, broad-bandwidth extreme ultraviolet (XUV) radiation is generated by a laser-driven high-harmonic source. The beamline is able to handle a spectral range of 30-130 eV and a beam divergence of 10 mrad (full width at half maximum). The XUV radiation is focused on the sample under investigation, and the broadband reflectivity is measured using an XUV spectrometer. For the given spectral window, the XCT beamline is particularly suited to investigate silicon-based nanostructured samples. Cross-sectional imaging of layered nanometer-scale samples can be routinely performed using the laboratory-scale XCT beamline. A depth resolution of 16 nm has been achieved using the spectral range of 36-98 eV which represents a 33% increase in resolution due to the broader spectral range compared to previous work.

M. Wünsche, S. Fuchs, T. Weber, J. Nathanael, J. Abel, J. Reinhard, F. Wiesner, U. Hübner, S. Skruszewicz, G. Paulus, and C. Rödel
A high resolution extreme ultraviolet spectrometer system optimized for harmonic spectroscopy and XUV beam analysis
Review of Scientific Instruments 90, 023108 (2019)

Abstract: We present a modular extreme ultraviolet (XUV) spectrometer system optimized for a broad spectral range of 12-41 nm (30-99 eV) with a high spectral resolution of lambda/Delta lambda greater than or similar to 784 +/- 89. The spectrometer system has several operation modes for (1) XUV beam inspection, (2) angular spectral analysis, and (3) imaging spectroscopy. These options allow for a versatile use in high harmonic spectroscopy and XUV beam analysis. The high performance of the spectrometer is demonstrated using a novel cross-sectional imaging method called XUV coherence tomography.

F. Wiesner, S. Fuchs, M. Wünsche, J. Nathanael, J. Abel, J. Reinhard, S. Skruszewicz, C. Rödel, A. Gawlik, G. Schmidl, and . others
Label-free quantitative material sensitive tomography with extreme ultraviolet light

Abstract: We report on quantitative material-sensitive cross-sectional imaging with nanoscale axial resolution. First experimental results show that in addition to the structural information element-specific identification of buried layers is possible.

S. Fuchs, M. Wünsche, J. Nathanael, J. Abel, J. Reinhard, F. Wiesner, S. Skruszewicz, C. Rödel, and G. Paulus
XUV coherence tomography with nanoscale resolution using one-dimensional phase retrieval

Abstract: We present XUV Coherence Tomography (XCT) driven by a high-harmonic generation (HHG) light source. Using a novel one-dimensional phase retrieval algorithm, XCT enables non-destructive, artifact-free, nanoscale, cross-sectional imaging, of, e.g., semiconductor devices.


S. Fuchs
Optische Kohärenztomographie mit extrem ultravioletter Strahlung
Doctoral thesis
Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Physikalisch-Astronomische Fakultät (2018)

Abstract: In this thesis, the concept and the realization of laboratory-based optical coherence tomography in the extreme ultraviolet (XUV) spectral range is presented. XUV coherence tomography (XCT) is a three-dimensional imaging technique with an axial resolution down to a few nanometer. A theoretical XCT model has been developed for the reconstruction of the sample structure, which includes the interaction between the XUV light and the sample. It is valid for absorbing samples illuminated under arbitrary angles of incidence and thus extends a common model of optical coherence tomography (OCT). As the information about the absorption and dispersion of the sample is contained in the XCT model, an additional reconstruction of material properties of the sample will be enabled.
The demonstration of laboratory-based XCT, which before has only been implemented at synchrotron facilities, was a major gaol of this thesis. Using high harmonic generation (HHG) of a femtosecond infrared laser pulse, a broadband laboratory-based XUV source with sufficient photon flux (approximately 0,2 nW/eV over the full bandwidth) in the so-called silicon transmission window between 30 eV − 100 eV was realized. A revised XCT microscope has been designed, constructed and adapted to the new laser-based XUV source, which routinely facilitates XCT measurements in the laboratory. The microscope is a three meter long vacuum beamline consisting of XUV source, focusing mirror, and sample chamber.
A comparison between laser-based and synchrotron-based measurements shows good agreement. With laser-based XCT, an axial resolution of approximately 30 nm has been achieved. This is comparable to the achieved synchrotron-based axial resolution of approximately 20 nm. Accordingly, the axial resolution of XCT is 2-3 orders of magnitude higher than in conventional OCT.
Unlike conventional OCT, the realized XCT setup does not use a beamsplitter for the generation of a reference wave. Instead, the surface of the sample serves as a reference. Therefore, the interferometric stability is intrinsically achieved and simplifies the experimental setup significantly. However, such a setup has the disadvantage that the reconstruction is ambiguous, since autocorrelation artifacts appear. A non-ambiguous reconstruction of the axial structure was so far not possible. In this thesis, a novel one-dimensional phase-retrieval algorithm is presented, which is able to remove the artifacts from the signal and allows a non-ambiguous reconstruction of the structure. Three-dimensional structured silicon-based samples have been investigated and processed with the new algorithm, which is referred to as PR-XCT. With the removal of artifacts and thus the possibility to use XCT on samples, whose inner structure is unknown before the measurement, a further goal of this thesis was achieved.
In fact, during laser-based PR-XCT measurements, an unexpected nanometer-thin layer was found inside the sample, which was not intentionally planned in the production process. The existence of this layer and thus the XCT measurement could only be confirmed by a transmission electron microscope. To this end, a thin slice was cut out of the sample, which was thus destroyed. The resolution of a scanning electron microscope was not high enough to resolve the layer. Later it turned out, that the vacuum chamber was vented for a short amount of time during the production process and a 1-2 nm layer of SiO2 was formed. Hereby, a striking advantage of XUV microscopy becomes apparent. Lighter elements like oxygen produce a high contrast in the XUV albeit they are almost indistinguishable from surrounding light elements like silicon in an electron microscope.
In this work, XCT is realized using optics with low numerical aperture (NA) since the fabrication of high NA optics in the XUV is technically extremely demanding. Therefore, the lateral resolution of the laboratory-based XCT setup is limited to approximately 23 μm. At least, the lateral resolution has been improved by a factor of 10 compared to the synchrotron-based measurements. However, the axial resolution of XCT is still orders of magnitudes better than the lateral resolution. Even with this technical limitation of the current XCT setup, several applications are within reach, e.g., threedimensional investigation of (multilayer-)coatings of optical mirrors or even XUV-mirrors, axial structured devices like solar cells or axial-structured semiconductor devices like graphene-based electronics. In addition, imaging of laterally homogeneous biological membranes might be possible. XCT with high numerical aperture and thus high lateral resolution could even have further applications, e.g., non-destructive three-dimensional imaging of semiconductor devices, lithographic masks, and biological structures. A combination of XCT with lensless imaging techniques like „Coherent Diffraction Imaging“ or Ptychography might be a promising approach to improve the lateral resolution of XCT. Furthermore, the intrinsic time resolution of the HHG source in the range of femto- or even attoseconds may allow time-resolved imaging of ultrafast processes in solids.


S. Fuchs, M. Wünsche, J. Nathanael, J. J. Abel, C. Rödel, J. Biedermann, J. Reinhard, U. Hübner, and G. G. Paulus
Optical coherence tomography with nanoscale axial resolution using a laser-driven high-harmonic source
Optica 4, 903 (2017)

Abstract: Extreme ultraviolet microscopy is technologically demanding and thus largely confined to synchrotron radiation facilities. However, specific benefits like high resolution and exceptional material contrast provide strong motivation for the development of table-top alternatives. We report on the first demonstration of coherence tomography, i.e., noninvasive cross-sectional imaging, with high harmonics. A depth resolution of 24 nm and very good material contrast are achieved. Excessively demanding optics for extreme ultraviolet radiation are avoided and artifacts due to the elementary geometry are suppressed with a novel three-step one-dimensional phase-retrieval algorithm. The images are recorded in reflection geometry, facilitating the analysis of, e.g., operating semiconductor samples.

M. Wünsche, S. Fuchs, S. Aull, J. Nathanael, M. Möller, C. Rödel, and G. G. Paulus
Quasi-supercontinuum source in the extreme ultraviolet using multiple frequency combs from high-harmonic generation
Optics Express 25, 6936 (2017)

Abstract: A quasi-supercontinuum source in the extreme ultraviolet (XUV) is demonstrated using a table-top femtosecond laser and a tunable optical parametric amplifier (OPA) as a driver for high-harmonic generation (HHG). The harmonic radiation, which is usually a comb of odd multiples of the fundamental frequency, is generated by near-infrared (NIR) laser pulses from the OPA. A quasi-continuous XUV spectrum in the range of 30 to 100 eV is realized by averaging over multiple harmonic comb spectra with slightly different fundamental frequencies and thus different spectral spacing between the individual harmonics. The driving laser wavelength is swept automatically during an averaging time period. With a total photon flux of 4×10^9 photons/s in the range of 30 eV to 100 eV and 1×10^7photons/s in the range of 100 eV to 200 eV, the resulting quasi-supercontinuum XUV source is suited for applications such as XUV coherence tomography (XCT) or near-edge absorption fine structure spectroscopy (NEXAFS).


S. Fuchs, C. Rödel, A. Blinne, U. Zastrau, M. Wünsche, V. Hilbert, L. Glaser, J. Viefhaus, E. Frumker, P. Corkum, E. Förster, and G. G. Paulus
Nanometer resolution optical coherence tomography using broad bandwidth XUV and soft x-ray radiation
Scientific Reports 6, 20658 (2016)

Abstract: Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a non-invasive technique for cross-sectional imaging. It is particularly advantageous for applications where conventional microscopy is not able to image deeper layers of samples in a reasonable time, e.g. in fast moving, deeper lying structures. However, at infrared and optical wavelengths, which are commonly used, the axial resolution of OCT is limited to about 1 μm, even if the bandwidth of the light covers a wide spectral range. Here, we present extreme ultraviolet coherence tomography (XCT) and thus introduce a new technique for non-invasive cross-sectional imaging of nanometer structures. XCT exploits the nanometerscale coherence lengths corresponding to the spectral transmission windows of, e.g., silicon samples. The axial resolution of coherence tomography is thus improved from micrometers to a few nanometers. Tomographic imaging with an axial resolution better than 18 nm is demonstrated for layer-type nanostructures buried in a silicon substrate. Using wavelengths in the water transmission window, nanometer-scale layers of platinum are retrieved with a resolution better than 8 nm. XCT as a nondestructive method for sub-surface tomographic imaging holds promise for several applications in semiconductor metrology and imaging in the water window.


T. Hahn, J. Bierbach, C. Rödel, D. Hemmers, M. Yeung, B. Dromey, S. Fuchs, A. Galestian, S. Kuschel, M. Zepf, G. Paulus, and G. Pretzler
Broadband XUV polarimetry of high harmonics from plasma surfaces using multiple Fresnel reflections
Applied Physics B 118, 241 (2015)

Abstract: High-harmonic generation (HHG) by nonlinear interaction of intense laser pulses with gases or plasma surfaces is the most prominent way of creating highly coherent extreme ultraviolet (EUV/XUV) pulses. In the last years, several scientific applications have been found which require the measurement of the polarization of the harmonic radiation. We present a broadband XUV polarimeter based on multiple Fresnel reflections providing an extinction rate of 5–25 for 17–45 nm which is particularly suited for surface harmonics. The device has first been tested at a gas harmonic source providing linearly polarized XUV radiation. In a further experiment using HHG from plasma surfaces, the XUV polarimeter allowed a polarization measurement of high harmonic radiation from plasma surfaces for the first time which reveals a linear polarization state as predicted for our generation parameters. The generation and control of intense polarized XUV pulses - together with the availability of broadband polarizers in the XUV - open the way for a series of new experiments. For instance, dichroism in the XUV, elliptically polarized harmonics from aligned molecules, or the selection rules of relativistic surface harmonics can be studied with the broadband XUV polarimeter.


V. Hilbert, A. Blinne, S. Fuchs, T. Feigl, T. Kämpfer, C. Rödel, I. Uschmann, M. Wünsche, G. Paulus, E. Förster, and U. Zastrau
An extreme ultraviolet Michelson interferometer for experiments at free-electron lasers
Review of Scientific Instruments 84, 095111 (2013)

Abstract: We present a Michelson interferometer for 13.5 nm soft x-ray radiation. It is characterized in a proof-of-principle experiment using synchrotron radiation, where the temporal coherence is measured to be 13 fs. The curvature of the thin-film beam splitter membrane is derived from the observed fringe pattern. The applicability of this Michelson interferometer at intense free-electron lasers is investigated, particularly with respect to radiation damage. This study highlights the potential role of such Michelson interferometers in solid density plasma investigations using, for instance, extreme soft x-ray free-electron lasers. A setup using the Michelson interferometer for pseudo-Nomarski-interferometry is proposed.

S. Fuchs, C. Rödel, M. Krebs, S. Hädrich, J. Bierbach, A. E. Paz, S. Kuschel, M. Wünsche, V. Hilbert, U. Zastrau, E. Förster, J. Limpert, and G. G. Paulus
Sensitivity calibration of an imaging extreme ultraviolet spectrometer-detector system for determining the efficiency of broadband extreme ultraviolet sources
Review of Scientific Instruments 84, 023101 (2013)

Abstract: We report on the absolute sensitivity calibration of an extreme ultraviolet (XUV) spectrometer system that is frequently employed to study emission from short-pulse laser experiments. The XUV spectrometer, consisting of a toroidal mirror and a transmission grating, was characterized at a synchrotron source in respect of the ratio of the detected to the incident photon flux at photon energies ranging from 15.5 eV to 99 eV. The absolute calibration allows the determination of the XUV photon number emitted by laser-based XUV sources, e.g., high-harmonic generation from plasma surfaces or in gaseous media. We have demonstrated high-harmonic generation in gases and plasma surfaces providing 2.3 μW and μJ per harmonic using the respective generation mechanisms.


C. Rödel, D. an der Brügge, J. Bierbach, M. Yeung, T. Hahn, B. Dromey, S. Herzer, S. Fuchs, A. Pour, E. Eckner, M. Behmke, M. Cerchez, O. Jäckel, D. Hemmers, T. Toncian, M. C. Kaluza, A. Belyanin, G. Pretzler, O. Willi, A. Pukhov, M. Zepf, and G. G. Paulus
Harmonic Generation from Relativistic Plasma Surfaces in Ultrasteep Plasma Density Gradients
Physical Review Letters 109, 125002 (2012)

Abstract: Harmonic generation in the limit of ultrasteep density gradients is studied experimentally. Observations reveal that, while the efficient generation of high order harmonics from relativistic surfaces requires steep plasma density scale lengths (L_p/λ < 1), the absolute efficiency of the harmonics declines for the steepest plasma density scale length L_p → 0, thus demonstrating that near-steplike density gradients can be achieved for interactions using high-contrast high-intensity laser pulses. Absolute photon yields are obtained using a calibrated detection system. The efficiency of harmonics reflected from the laser driven plasma surface via the relativistic oscillating mirror was estimated to be in the range of 10^{-4} – 10^{-6} of the laser pulse energy for photon energies ranging from 20 – 40 eV, with the best results being obtained for an intermediate density scale length.

J. Bierbach, C. Rödel, M. Yeung, B. Dromey, T. Hahn, A. Pour, S. Fuchs, A. E. Paz, S. Herzer, S. Kuschel, O. Jäckel, M. C. Kaluza, G. Pretzler, M. Zepf, and G. G. Paulus
Generation of 10 µW relativistic surface high-harmonic radiation at a repetition rate of 10 Hz
New Journal of Physics 14, 065005 (2012)

Abstract: Experimental results on relativistic surface HHG at a repetition rate of 10 Hz are presented. Average powers in the 10 μW range are generated in the spectral range of 51 to 26 nm (24 - 48 eV). The surface harmonic radiation is produced by focusing the second-harmonic of a high-power laser onto a rotating glass surface to moderately relativistic intensities of 3 × 10^{19} W cm^{−2}. The harmonic emission exhibits a divergence of 26 mrad. Together with absolute photon numbers recorded by a calibrated spectrometer, this allows for the determination of the extreme ultraviolet (XUV) yield. The pulse energies of individual harmonics are reaching up to the μJ level, equivalent to an efficiency of 10^{−5}. The capability of producing stable and intense high-harmonic radiation from relativistic surface plasmas may facilitate experiments on nonlinear ionization or the seeding of free-electron lasers.

S. Fuchs, A. Blinne, C. Rödel, U. Zastrau, V. Hilbert, M. Wünsche, J. Bierbach, E. Frumker, E. Förster, and G. G. Paulus
Optical coherence tomography using broad-bandwidth XUV and soft X-ray radiation
Applied Physics B 106, 789 (2012)

Abstract: We present a novel approach to extend optical coherence tomography (OCT) to the extreme ultraviolet (XUV) and soft X-ray (SXR) spectral range. With a simple setup based on Fourier-domain OCT and adapted for the application of XUV and SXR broadband radiation, cross-sectional images of semiconductors and organic samples becomes feasible with current synchrotron or laser-plasma sources. For this purpose, broadband XUV radiation is focused onto the sample surface, and the reflected spectrum is recorded by an XUV spectrometer. The proposed method has the particular advantage that the axial spatial resolution only depends on the spectral bandwidth. As a consequence, the theoretical resolution limit of XUV coherence tomography (XCT) is in the order of nanometers, e.g., 3 nm for wavelengths in the water window (280 - 530 eV). We proved the concept of XCT by calculating the reflectivity of one-dimensional silicon and boron carbide samples containing buried layers and found the expected properties with respect to resolution and penetration depth confirmed.

S. Fuchs
Optische Kohärenztomografie mit kurzen Wellenlängen
Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Physikalisch-Astronomische Fakultät (2012)

Abstract: n/a