In this decade coherent X-ray diffraction imaging has been demonstrated to reveal internal structures of whole biological cells and organelles. However, the spatial resolution is limited to several tens of nanometers due to the poor scattering power of biological samples. The challenge is to recover correct phase information from experimental diffraction patterns that have a low signal-to-noise ratio and unmeasurable lowest-resolution data. Here, we propose a method to extend spatial resolution by enhancing diffraction signals and by robust phasing. The weak diffraction signals from biological objects are enhanced by interference with strong waves from dispersed colloidal gold particles. The positions of the gold particles determined by Patterson analysis serve as the initial phase, and this dramatically improves reliability and convergence of image reconstruction by iterative phase retrieval. A set of calculations based on current experiments demonstrates that resolution is improved by a factor of two or more.
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