"Advances in micro-, nano-, and biotechnology put increasing demands on nanoscale microscopy and characterization. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) is one of the highest resolution microscopy methods used in this area. In this project, we will develop a new type of AFM sensor, which will significantly increase the performance of AFM and make it suitable for a much broader range of applications, especially in the life sciences. While traditional AFMs using optical detection of the cantilever sensor, yield very high resolution images, their imaging speed is low, they are difficult to automate and integration with other analysis techniques is limited due to the required optical components.
This project aims at removing these limitations for a large area of attractive AFM-applications such as fast analysis in materials science and biological applications. The innovative concept is based on ""all electric bio cantilevers"", ALBICAN. These cantilevers will use novel granular tunneling resistors (NTR), which are fabricated with a mask-less direct writing technique: focused electron beam induced deposited (FEBID). The AFM cantilever will be equipped with an NTR deflection sensor that directly measures the cantilever signal electrically, which removes the need for optical cantilever detection. Recent improvements in AFM cantilever technology have increased the imaging speed of AFM by up to two orders of magnitude by miniaturizing AFM cantilevers (SCL-Sensor.Tech. AMG-T). The unique approach in this proposal, which builds on new materials and fabrication processes (Nanoss), will allow the manufacturing of unprecedented small cantilever sensors with vastly superior performance in imaging speed and usability. These cantilevers will be compatible with a wide variety of existing AFMs and applications in materials and life science. Thereby providing a unique technological edge for the involved SMEs, and opening new avenues for the commercialization of their products and technologies."
Fields of science
Call for proposal
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