Existing imaging modalities like microwave- or radiofrequency (RF) induced thermoacoustic tomography systems show the potential for resolving structures deep inside tissue due to the high penetration properties of RF. However, one of the major drawbacks of existing thermoacoustic tomography systems with pulse modulated carrier frequency excitation is the compromise between efficient signal generation and attainable spatial resolution. In order to overcome limitations of conventional thermoacoustic imaging methods, we herein present and experimentally validate our novel approach towards high resolution thermoacoustic tomography. Instead of carrier-frequency amplification, we utilize ultrahigh-energy electromagnetic impulses at nanosecond duration with near-field energy coupling, thus maintaining thermoacoustic signal strength without compromising spatial resolution. Preliminary experiments on highly absorbing objects, consisting of copper wires with characteristic sizes of ~100 μm, reveal the resolution performance which yields 160 μm. Furthermore, benefits like its cost effectiveness, simplicity and compactness with the potential application in small animal imaging as well as human body imaging show that thermoacoustic tomography with impulse excitation is a promising imaging modality which has a broad range of applications.