We propose a method to fabricate a probe with a nanometric protrusion for near-field optical microscopy. The method involves a tapering process based on selective etching of a GeO2-doped fiber in a buffered hydrogen fluoride solution and a metallizing process by vacuum evaporation and chemical polishing. We fabricated a tapered probe which has a protrusion emerging from a metal film. The protrusion has an apex diameter less than 10nm and a foot diameter less than 20nm. Employing the probe, we succeeded in obtaining a highly resolved image of 20nm gold particles.
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