AFM Cantilever

Active AFM Cantilever (AFM-CL)

Probes with piezoresistive read-out enable reproducible atomic-resolution imaging. The thermomechanical actuator integrated “on the probe” allows for excitation of the cantilever with its resonant frequency as well as seven or more eigen-modes. It makes static displacement possible without any interference to the mechanical AFM-setup. The piezoresistive Wheatstone bridge configuration of the read-out and the unique design enable effective temperature and actuator crosstalk compensation. Thermomechanical actuation is based on multi-layer structures composed of diverse thin film layers. Different coefficients of thermal expansion between the layers result in bending of the cantilever by means of differential extension of composite layers. In the context, the displacement of the cantilever tip can be precisely controlled by the dissipated electrical power in the embedded thin-film metallic resistor. nano analytik GmbH developed for its customers a series of small form-factor preamplifiers with high-bandwidth and low-noise performance, suitable for fast AFM applications. The preamplifier module has a small mass and can be integrated in any AFM-head in sample- and cantilever-scanning configuration.

How it works


Possible operating modeActive / Passive
ActuationIntegrated thermomechanically driven actuator
DimensionsW = 120 µm (+/- 5 µm)
L = 350 µm (+/- 10 µm)
T = 3 – 5 µm is possible (+/- 1 µm)
Tip hight4.5 µm in plane (+/- 10%)
Tip position from top3 µm (+/- 0.5 µm)
Force ConstantCalibration on demand (+/- 10 N/m)
Resonance Frequencyf = 30-110 kHz is possible (+/- 5 kHz)
Possible CoatingsUpon request, reflective backside-coating of proven materials


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