The demand for enhanced optical resolution has driven the search for technological innovations and improvements. The main reason for this was the optics development in recent years. It has been focused on components for electromagnetic radiation with increasingly shorter wavelengths λ.
The good prospects for extreme ultraviolet radiation and soft X-rays (EUV/soft X-rays) have led to considerable progress in the development of different sources and reflective optics for the following applications with their various spectral ranges:
- Next generation lithography systems (λ = 13.5 nm),
- Microscopy in the “water window“ (λ = 2.3 nm – 4.4 nm),
- Astronomy (λ = 15 nm – 100 nm),
- Plasma diagnostics
- EUV/soft X-ray laser research.