New and improved scanning probe microscope

Probe upgraded in preparation for use in conjunction with the vapor deposition system | January 28, 2003

The department's scanning probe microscope (SPM) was upgraded in preparation for use in conjunction with the vapor deposition system, as well as by Dr. Isam Marawi of the chemistry department. The $67,000 price included a new scanning head, of which $33,000 went towards electrochemistry features, electronic controllers, and a computer with the imaging software. The SPM has already been used to measure the amount of material deposited by the deposition system with atomic force microscopy.

In 1997, the physics department purchased a Scanning Probe Microscope (AutoProbe CP). The microscope was upgraded in early 2003 for $67,000, or which $33,000 went towards electrochemistry features.

The microscope is capable of atomic force microscopy, non-contact a.f.m., scanning tunneling m., magnetic f.m., and a few others. A small tip approximately 200 microns wide is attached to the end of a triangular cantilever. A laser is reflected off the back of the cantilever and into a photodiode, which tracks its vertical motion. In this way, a 3D map of the sample surface is created.

Past work has been done on carbon nanotubes and anaylsis of impurities in steel. Current work is being done in conjunction with the department's new vapor deposition system, specifically in analyzing the deposited material.