Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.


Beyond diffraction

A material with a cunningly designed optical response overcomes a fundamental limit to image resolution. This 'hyperlens' produces magnified images of objects smaller than the wavelength of the imaging light.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Relevant articles

Open Access articles citing this article.

Access options

Rent or buy this article

Prices vary by article type



Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout

Figure 1: How to build a hyperlens.


  1. Liu, Z., Lee, H., Xiong, Y., Sun, C. & Zhang, X. Science 315, 1686 (2007).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Smolyaninov, I. I., Hung, Y.-J. & Davis, C. C. Science 315, 1699–1701 (2007).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Abbe, E. Arch. Mikrosk. Anat. EntwMech. 9, 413–468 (1873).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Jacob, Z., Alekseyev, L. V. & Narimanov, E. Opt. Express 14, 8247–8256 (2006).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  5. Salandrino, A. & Engheta, N. Phys. Rev. B 74, 075103 (2006).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  6. Pendry, J. B. Phys. Rev. Lett. 85, 3966–3969 (2000).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  7. Liu, Z. et al. Nano Lett. 7, 403–408 (2007).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Narimanov, E., Shalaev, V. Beyond diffraction. Nature 447, 266–267 (2007).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing