Nanowire AFM Work is Editors’ Choice in Physics
On the 28th, Physics, the APS’s daily news and commentary site, named our work on nanowire AFM sensors as an Editors’ Choice. The story highlighted our article entitled, Vectorial scanning force microcopy using a nanowire sensor along with related work.
Neue Zürcher Zeitung Highlights our Work
On the 18th, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung published a piece highlighting our work using nanowires as sensors for atomic force microscopy. The story is based on our article entitled, Vectorial scanning force microcopy using a nanowire sensor, published in Nature Nanotechnology. A follow-up version of the story appeared in the Friday, 21 October 2016 print edition of the paper on page 59.
Nanowire AFM Article in Nature Nanotechnology
On Monday, the 17th, Nature Nanotechnology published our article entitled, Vectorial scanning force microcopy using a nanowire sensor, in which we demonstrate a new type of atomic force microscope (AFM) using nanowires (NWs) as tiny sensors. Unlike standard AFM, the NW-based technique enables measurements of both the size and direction of forces.
Self-assembled NW crystals can be grown into nearly defect-free nanomechanical resonators with exceptional properties, including small motional mass, high resonant frequency and low dissipation. Furthermore, by virtue of slight asymmetries in geometry, a NW’s flexural modes are split into doublets oscillating along orthogonal axes. These characteristics make bottom-up grown NWs extremely sensitive vectorial force sensors. Taking advantage of its adaptability as a scanning probe, we demonstrate the use of a single NW to image a sample surface. By monitoring the frequency shift and direction of oscillation of both modes as we scan above the surface, we construct a map of all spatial tip–sample force derivatives in the plane. Finally, we use the NW to image electric force fields distinguishing between forces arising from the NW charge and polarizability. This universally applicable technique enables a form of atomic force microscopy particularly suited to mapping the size and direction of weak tip–sample forces.
The work represents a collaboration between our group, led by Ph.D. student Nicola Rossi and post-doc Dr. Floris Braakman, and the group of Prof. Anna Fontcuberta i Morral at EPFL. Ph.D. student Davide Cadeddu and Dr. Denis Vasyukov from our group also contributed, while Ph.D. student Gözde Tütüncüoglu from the Fontcuberta group grew the NWs. The study was supported by the European Research Council Starting Grant NWScan, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the Canton Aargau, the Swiss National Science Foundation, and the National Center of Competence in Research for Quantum Science and Technology.
More information is available in a news piece by the University of Basel Press Office.