Complex dynamics of carbon nanotube probe tips

Soo Il Lee, Arvind Raman, Stephen W. Howell, Ron Reifenberger, Cattien V. Nguyen, Meyya Meyyappan

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Carbon nanotube (CNT) tips in tapping mode atomic force microscopy (AFM) enable very high-resolution imaging, measurements, and manipulation at the nanoscale. We present recent results based on experimental analysis that yield new insights into the dynamics of CNT probe tips in tapping mode AFM. Experimental measurements are presented of the static response, the frequency response and dynamic amplitude-distance data of a high-aspect-ratio multi-walled (MW) CNT tip to demonstrate the nonlinear features including tip amplitude saturation preceding the dynamic buckling of the MWCNT. The differences between the nonlinear tapping mode response of CNT tips are compared with previously known results on the nonlinear response of conventional tips. Surface scanning is performed using a MWCNT tip on a SiO2 grating to verify the imaging instabilities associated with MWCNT buckling when used with normal control schemes in the tapping mode. Lastly, the choice of optimal setpoints for tapping mode control using CNT tip are discussed using the experimental results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)577-583
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers, Design Engineering Division (Publication) DE
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2003
Event2003 ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress - Washington, DC, United States
Duration: 15 Nov 200321 Nov 2003


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