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Development of advanced atomic force microscopy characterization techniques

The development and implementation of original protocols based on Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) for the characterization of nanoscale surface properties represents an important research activity of CIMAINA. This task is strategic for a centre like CIMAINA that aims competing at international level in the field of nanoscience with the leading research groups.
So far, characterization protocols allowing the simultaneous acquisitions of maps of topography and of different physical-chemical surface properties (friction and adhesion, elastic properties, electric impedance) have been developed or implemented. Beside AFM commercial sharp tips, custom micrometer-sized spherical probes (2-100 um) can be produced in-house according to the requirements. Dedicated data processing protocols have been developed to extract statistically meaningful and accurate information from the raw AFM data.

Development of Atomic Force Microscopy techniques for the study of nanostructured systems and interfaces

  1. Statistical analysis of surface morphology of thin films and nanostructures;
  2. Metrology of nanometer-sized objects (proteins and nanoparticles);
  3. Nanotribological and nanomechanical characterization of (bio)interfaces;
  4. Force-spectroscopy;
  5. Scanning electric impedance microscopy;
  6. Calibration of AFM probes.
  7. Production and calibration of colloidal probes for AFM (diameters 2-100 μm)

Referent: Alessandro Podestà

Participants: Francesca Borghi, Matteo Chighizola, Massimiliano Galluzzi, Luca Puricelli