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Harmonic Force Microscopy using Flexural Resonance


Stanford Reference:

02-045


Abstract


Harmonic cantilevers provide new contrast mechanism for imaging and characterizing surfaces on the nanoscale. The harmonic cantilever offers the advantage over a regular cantilever by efficiently transferring energy from the fundamental vibration mode to a specific higher order mode of vibrations. A standard atomic force microscope can easily detect the vibrations of the higher mode allowing for extreme sensitivity to elasticity, viscoelasticity and adhesive properties.

An inherent advantage of harmonic cantilevers is the utilization of contrast mechanisms for high resolution imaging of surfaces with large topographical variations. Topography images of such surfaces obtained by conventional Atomic Force Microscopes obscure finer details on those surfaces. However, the harmonic cantilever is not compromised by large topographical variations thus providing greater resolution than traditional tapping-mode Atomic Force Microscopy.

Additionally harmonic cantilevers allow for detection of tip-sample engagement. From a practical point of view this saves time and makes for more efficient processing.

The ability to sense such surface properties at the nanoscale has applications in numerous fields, including characterization of ultra-thin films in semiconductor devices, mechanical studies of nanostructured materials, imaging chemical compositional variations across polymer surfaces, and imaging of biological films.

The fabrication of harmonic cantilevers is very similar to the process used for regular cantilevers. Harmonic cantilevers provide all the imaging and measurement capabilities of regular cantilevers with the advantage of a unique higher harmonic contrast mechanism. Harmonic cantilevers can replace traditional cantilevers to enhance the capabilities of existing Atomic Force Microscopes.

Applications


  • Semiconductor devices
  • Nanotechnology
  • Material Science
  • Biotechnology

Advantages


  • High sensitivity to material properties
  • High resolution imaging of surfaces with large topographical variations.
  • Faster tip-sample engagement
  • Conventional process methods are used to be fabricated. Therefore they can be good replacements for traditional cantilevers.

Publications


  • 1) O. Sahin, A. Atalar, C. F. Quate, and O. Solgaard. "Enhanced Higher-harmonic Generation In Tapping-mode Atomic Force Microscopy With Harmonic Cantilevers". Oxford 2003 Scanning Probe Microscopy, Sensors and Nanostructures.
  • 2) O. Sahin, G. yaralioglu, R. Grow, S.F. Zappe, A. Atalar, C. Quate, and O. Solgaard. "Harmonic Cantilevers for Nanomechanical Sensing of Elastic Properties". TRANSDUCERS, Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems, 12th International Conference on, 2003 , Volume: 2 , June 9-12, 2003
  • Page(s): 1124 -1127
  • 3) O. Sahin and A. Atalar, "Simulation of higher harmonics generation in tapping-mode atomic force microscopy" ,Applied Physics Letters (Vol. 79), 2001 pp. 4445

Innovators & Portfolio



Patent Status



Date Released

 8/15/2003
 

Licensing Contact


Linda Chao, Senior Associate
(650) 725-9408 (Direct)
Request Info

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Related Keywords


instrumentation: atomic probe microscopy   AFM   instrumentation   
 

   

  

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