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Journal Articles Ultramicroscopy Year : 2017

Multi-MHz micro-electro-mechanical sensors for atomic force microscopy


Silicon ring-shaped micro-electro-mechanical resonators have been fabricated and used as probes for dynamic atomic force microscopy (AFM) experiments. They offer resonance frequency above 10 MHz, which is notably greater than that of usual cantilevers and quartz-based AFM probes. On-chip electrical actuation and readout of the tip oscillation are obtained by means of built-in capacitive transducers. Displacement and force resolutions have been determined from noise analysis at 1.5 fm/√Hz and 0.4 pN/√Hz, respectively. Despite the high effective stiffness of the probes, the tip-surface interaction force is kept below 1 nN by using vibration amplitude significantly below 100 pm and setpoint close to the free vibration conditions. Imaging capabilities in amplitude- and frequency-modulation AFM modes have been demonstrated on block copolymer surfaces. Z-spectroscopy experiments revealed that the tip is vibrating in permanent contact with the viscoelastic material, with a pinned contact line. Results are compared to those obtained with commercial AFM cantilevers driven at large amplitudes (>10 nm).
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Dates and versions

hal-01765180 , version 1 (27-11-2020)



Bernard Legrand, Jean-Paul Salvetat, Benjamin Walter, Marc Faucher, Didier Theron, et al.. Multi-MHz micro-electro-mechanical sensors for atomic force microscopy. Ultramicroscopy, 2017, 175, pp.46 - 57. ⟨10.1016/j.ultramic.2017.01.005⟩. ⟨hal-01765180⟩
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