Agilent Technologies | E5500 Series | User`s guide | Agilent Technologies E5500 Series User`s guide

Agilent Technologies
5500 Scanning Probe
Microscope
User’s Guide
Agilent Technologies
Notices
© Agilent Technologies, Inc. 2008
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N9410-90001
Edition
Rev B, September 2008
Printed in USA
Agilent Technologies, Inc.
1601 California Street 
Palo Alto, CA 94304 USA
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Safety Notices
CAUTION
A CAUTION notice denotes a hazard. It calls attention to an operating procedure, practice, or the like
that, if not correctly performed or
adhered to, could result in damage
to the product or loss of important
data. Do not proceed beyond a
CAUTION notice until the indicated
conditions are fully understood and
met.
WA RNING
A WARNING notice denotes a
hazard. It calls attention to an
operating procedure, practice, or
the like that, if not correctly performed or adhered to, could result
in personal injury or death. Do not
proceed beyond a WARNING
notice until the indicated conditions are fully understood and
met.
Read This First
Read This First
Warranty
Agilent warrants Agilent hardware, accessories and supplies against
defects in material and workmanship for a period of one year from date
of shipment. If Agilent receives notice of such defects during the
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Agilent will replace software media which does not execute its
programming instructions due to such defects. For detailed warranty
information, see back matter.
Safety Considerations
• General - This product and related documentation must be reviewed
for familiarization with these safety markings and instructions before
operation.
This product is a safety Class I instrument (provided with a
protective earth terminal).
• Before Applying Power - Verify that the product is set to match the
available line voltage and the correct fuse is installed. Refer to
instructions in “Facility Requirements" on page 55of the manual.
• Before Cleaning - Disconnect the product from operating power
before cleaning.
• Safety Earth Ground - An uninterrupted safety earth ground must
be provided from the main power source to the product input wiring
terminals or supplied power cable.
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Specifications
Environmental Conditions
Temperature (Operating): 5 to 40 °C
Temperature (Non-operating): -40 to 70 °C
Relative Humidity (Operating): 15 to 95 % non-condensing
Altitude: 2000 m
Power Requirements
100/120/220/240 VAC, 50/60 Hz
Mains supply voltage fluctuations are not to exceed 10 % of the nominal
supply voltage.
NOTE
These specifications apply to the Agilent 5500 system, and do not
guarantee the function of an experiment (including the cantilever) in
these conditions.
Equipment Class I, Pollution Degree 2, Installation Category II.
This equipment is for indoor use only.
When the product is subjected to 8 kV air discharge or 4 kV contact
discharge in accordance with IEC 61000-4-2, interruption of the laser
output may occur.
If this happens, laser power must be re-cycled in order to resume normal
operation. CAUT
CAUTION
Stop using the scanner if the scanner cable insulation is damaged in order
to avoid electrical shock. Have it repaired or replaced by the factory.
Laser Safety Information
This system is designed to be used with a Class II or Class III diode
laser with an output of up to 1 mW of visible radiation at 670 nm or
980 nm. The aperture in the AFM scanning head is labeled with the
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logotype (shown below). DO NOT stare directly into the laser beam. To
ensure safe operation, the scanner must be operated and maintained in
accordance with the instructions included with the laser. The laser must
only be powered by a controller that includes an on/off switch, such as
the Agilent SPM Controller. DO NOT attempt to make any adjustments
to the laser, the laser’s electronics, or optics. If laser malfunction is
suspected, immediately return the scanner to Agilent Technologies,
Inc.for repair or replacement; there are no user-serviceable parts. WA
WA RNING
RN
Use of controls or adjustments or performance of procedures other than
those specified herein may result in hazardous light exposure.
Furthermore, the use of optical instruments with this product may
increase eye hazard.
In accordance with federal FDA requirements, one of the following
laser precautions is affixed to the scanner:
Power Supply
It is not necessary to open the Agilent AFM Controller to make changes
to the power supply. However, the power cord should always be
unplugged before making any adjustments to the power source. The
Agilent SPM Controller has several different power supply options.
Procedure for Changing Input Voltage
1 Unplug the power cord from the Agilent AFM Controller.
2 Remove the fuse holder located on the back of the controller.
3 Underneath where the fuse holder was located is the input voltage
control switch. Pull out the switch and rotate it to the desired input
voltage 100/120/220/240 V.
4 Reinsert the voltage switch with the desired voltage.
5 Replace the fuse holder.
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Piezo Scanner Precautions
Piezo scanners are, by nature, very FRAGILE pieces of equipment. The
piezo material that does the scanning is a ceramic and is consequently
quite easily broken. Dropping a piezo scanner will result in damage to
the scanner that can only be repaired by completely replacing the
scanner piezo core. This can be an expensive and time-consuming
process and so it is advised that the utmost care is used when handling
the scanners. Agilent Technologies, Inc. recommends that the scanners
be stored in the padded scanner case that was supplied with the scanner
and that the scanner be kept in a dry environment when not in use. Piezo
scanners also perform better with consistent use. If a scanner is not used
for some time it may require a short period of use before the scan range
is stable and the calibration is correct. It may also be necessary to
re-calibrate the scanner from time to time. The calibration can be
verified using a calibration standard, and adjustments can be made using
the calibration tools.
General Care Requirements
SPM equipment is sensitive scientific equipment. Care must be used
when handling all parts. When removing scanners from the microscope
ensure that all cable connections to the scanner are disconnected. This
includes cables for photo-diode detectors. Also, the photo-diode
detector should be removed from the scanner prior to the removal of the
scanner from the microscope. All equipment, especially the sample
plates and scanner nose modules should be kept clean and free from
contamination when not in use. It is recommended, to prolong the life of
these items, that after use all sample plates and noses are cleaned
thoroughly and dried off prior to storage. Cleaning can be done using an
organic solvent. Please refer to the appropriate sections of the manual
for further information regarding the proper cleaning of equipment.
Disclaimers
This User’s Guide, as well as the hardware herein described, is licensed
and can only be used in compliance with such terms and agreements as
entered in by Agilent Technologies, Inc. Users of these products
understand, except where permission is given by Agilent Technologies,
Inc. by said license, no part of this manual may be copied, transmitted,
stored in a general retrieval system, in any form or means, electronic, or
mechanical, without prior written permission of Agilent Technologies,
Inc. Information contained herein this User’s Guide is for general
information use only. Information is subject to change without notice.
Information should not be construed as a commitment by Agilent
N9410-90001 Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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Technologies, Inc. Furthermore, Agilent Technologies, Inc. assumes no
responsibility or liability for any misinformation, errors, or general
inaccuracies that may appear in this manual.
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Declaration of Conformity
DECLARATION OF CONFORMITY
According to ISO/IEC Guide 22 and CEN/CENELEC EN 45014
Manufacturer’s Name:
Manufacturer’s Address:
Supplier’s Address:
Agilent Technologies, Incorporated
5301 Stevens Creek Boulevard
Santa Clara, CA 95051
USA
Declares under sole responsibility that the product as originally delivered
Product Name:
Model Number:
Product Options:
PicoPlus – Atomic Force Microscope
Series 5500
This declaration covers all options of the above products
complies with the essential requirements of the following applicable European Directives,
and carries the CE marking accordingly:


The Low Voltage Directive 73/23/EEC, amended by 93/68/EEC
The EMC Directive 89/336/EEC, amended by 93/68/EEC
and conforms with the following product standards:
EMC
Standard
Limit
IEC 61326-1:1997+A1:1998 / EN 61326-1:1997+A1:1998
CISPR 11:1990 / EN 55011:1991
IEC 61000-4-2: 1995+A1: 1998 / EN 61000-4-2:1995
IEC 61000-4-3: 1995 / EN 61000-4-3: 1995
IEC 61000-4-4: 1995 / EN 61000-4-4: 1995
IEC 61000-4-5: 1995 / EN 61000-4-5: 1995
IEC 61000-4-6: 1995 / EN 61000-4-6: 1995
IEC 61000-4-11: 1994 / EN 61000-4-11: 1994
Group 1 Class A
4 kV CD, 8kV AD
3 V/m, 80-1000MHz
0.5 kV signal lines, 1 kV power lines
0.5 kV line-line, 1kV line-ground
3 V, 0.15-80 MHz 1 cycle, 100%
Dips: 30% 10ms; 60% 100ms
Interrupt: > 95%@5000ms
Canada: ICES-001:1998
Australia/New Zealand: AS/NZS 2064.1
This product was tested in a typical configuration with Agilent Technologies test systems
IEC 61010-1:2001 / EN 61010-1:2001
IEC 60825-1:1993+A1:1997+A2:2001
EN 60825-1:1994, Class 2 Laser Product
USA:21CFR 1040.10+1040.11, Class II
Canada: CSA C22.2 No. 1010.1:1992
Safety
Supplementary Information:
This DoC applies to above-listed products placed on the EU market after:
25 August 2006
Randall White
Date
Randall White
Product Regulations Manager
For further information, please contact your local Agilent Technologies sales office, agent or distributor,
or Agilent Technologies Deutschland GmbH, Herrenberger Straße 130, D 71034 Böblingen, Germany.
N9410-90001 Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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Contact Information
Agilent Technologies, Inc.
4330 W. Chandler Blvd., Chandler, Arizona 85226-4965 U.S.A.
Tel: +1.480-756-5900 Fax: +1.480-756-5950
E-mail: AFM-info@agilent.com Web: www.agilent.com
Customer Technical Support
Tel: +1-480-756-5900
Fax: +1-480-756-5950
E-mail: AFM-Support@agilent.com
Technical Sales
Tel: +1-480-756-5900
Fax: +1-480-756-5950
E-mail: AFM-info@agilent.com
Distributors and Account Representatives
Please visit our web site for up-to-date information:
http://nano.tm.agilent.com/index.cgi?CONTENT_ID=253
N9410-90001 Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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Contents
Table of Contents
Read This First
Specifications
4
Laser Safety Information
Power Supply
4
5
Piezo Scanner Precautions
6
General Care Requirements
6
Disclaimers
6
Declaration of Conformity
Contact Information
8
9
1 Introduction to the Agilent 5500
Overview of Agilent SPM System
SPM Basics
17
18
SPM Techniques
20
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM) 20
Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) 21
Contact Mode AFM 23
Intermittent Contact AFM 24
Acoustic AC (AAC) AFM 25
Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode 26
Top MAC Mode 27
Current Sensing Mode (CSAFM)
27
Force Modulation Microscopy (FMM)
28
Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM) 29
Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM) 29
Magnetic Force Microscopy (MFM) 29
Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM) 30
Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM)
30
2 Agilent 5500 SPM Components
Microscope
Probes
34
35
Nose Assembly
36
One-Piece Nose Assemblies
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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Contents
Two-Piece Nose Assemblies
Scanner
38
Detector
40
Sample Plates
Video System
41
43
Head Electronics Box (HEB)
AFM Controller
44
45
Vibration Isolation Chamber
Software
36
46
47
System Options 48
MAC Mode
48
MAC III Mode
49
Liquid Cell 49
Temperature Control 50
Thermal K
50
Environmental Chamber
50
Glove Box
50
Electrochemistry 51
PicoTREC 51
PicoLITH
52
3 Setting Up the Agilent 5500 SPM
Component and Facility Dimensions
53
Facility Requirements
55
Utilities
56
Noise and Facility Specifications
56
Acoustic Noise 56
Temperature and Humidity Variation 57
Connecting the Components
58
Guidelines for Moving the System
58
4 Preparing for Imaging
Setting Up the Scanner Assembly 59
One-Piece Nose Assembly
60
Inserting the One-Piece Nose Assembly 60
Removing the One-Piece Nose Assembly 62
Inserting a Probe in the One-Piece Nose Assembly 64
Two-Piece Nose Assembly
67
Inserting the Body of the Two-Piece Nose Assembly 67
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Removing the Body of the Two-Piece Nose Assembly 68
Inserting a Probe in the Two-Piece Nose Assembly 69
Inserting the Scanner and Connecting Cables 70
Aligning the Laser 72
Inserting and Aligning the Detector
Mounting the Sample
79
83
Using the Video System
86
Care and Handling of the Probes and Scanner
Probes
90
Nose Assembly
90
Two-Piece Nose Cone Cleaning 90
Scanner
90
90
5 Contact Mode Imaging
Setting Up for Contact Mode Imaging
Constant Force Mode
93
Constant Height Mode
100
Fine-Tuning the Image
100
Setpoint 100
Gains 101
Scan Settings 101
93
6 AC Modes
Acoustic AC Mode (AAC)
AAC Mode
104
Constant Height Mode
104
109
Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode
110
Standard MAC Mode 111
Top MAC Mode
112
Q Control
112
7 Additional Imaging Modes
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM)
Current Sensing AFM (CSAFM)
Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM)
114
119
123
Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM)
Force Modulation Microscopy (FMM)
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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127
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Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM)
Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM)
130
134
8 Scanner Maintenance and Calibration
Care and Handling of the Probes and Scanner
Probes
138
Nose Assembly
138
Two-Piece Nose Cone Cleaning 139
Scanner
139
138
Scanner Characteristics 139
Non-Linearity 140
Sensitivity
140
Hysteresis
140
Other Characteristics
141
Bow 141
Cross Coupling 141
Aging 142
Creep 142
Calibrating the Multi-Purpose Scanner
X Calibration 144
X Non-Linearity 145
X Hysteresis 146
X Sensitivity 147
Y Calibration 147
Y Non-Linearity 148
Y Hysteresis 149
Y Sensitivity 150
Z Calibration
151
Sensitivity 151
Servo Gain Multiplier
143
152
Archive the Calibration Files
152
9 Closed-Loop Scanners
Scanner Types
153
Z-Axis Closed-Loop Scanner
X/Y/Z Closed-Loop Scanner
Calibration
154
X and Y Sensor Calibration
Z Sensor Calibration 158
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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154
154
13
Contents
10 MAC Mode
List of MAC Mode Components
Connections
162
163
Hardware and Sample Setup
164
11 MAC III Mode
Initial Setup
167
List of MAC III Components
Connections 168
Hardware and Sample Setup
167
171
MAC III Software Controls
171
Simplified Software Control Options
Contact Mode 172
AC AFM 172
STM 174
LFM 174
DLFM 174
FMM 175
EFM 177
KFM 180
Advanced Software Control Options
Lock-In Tabs 183
Outputs Tab 185
Other Tab 188
171
182
12 Liquid Cell
Liquid Cell with Standard Sample Plate
Liquid Cell with MAC Mode 193
Flow-Through Liquid Cell
193
191
13 Temperature Control
Cantilevers for Temperature Controlled Imaging
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
High Temperature Sample Plates
Connections
197
Imaging
200
195
Peltier (Cold MAC) Sample Plate
Connections
204
Water Cooling
206
202
194
14
Contents
Imaging
207
Tips for Temperature Controlled Imaging
208
14 Environmental Control
Environmental Chamber
Glove Box
209
212
15 Electrochemistry
Equipment 216
Liquid Cell 216
Electrodes
216
Working Electrode and Pogo Electrode 216
Reference Electrode 217
Counter Electrode 217
Cleaning
218
Liquid Cell Cleaning
218
Non-Critical Applications 218
Critical Applications 218
Electrode Cleaning
219
Sample Plate Cleaning 219
Substrate Cleaning
219
Assembling and Loading the Liquid Cell
Troubleshooting
220
Electrochemistry Definitions
219
220
Software Controls
221
Potentiostat
221
Galvanostat
222
A Wiring Diagrams
Agilent 5500 SPM Standard Wiring Diagram
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode Controller
224
225
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode, Force Modulation Imaging
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option
226
227
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option and Closed Loop Scanner
228
Index
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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Agilent 5500 SPM
User’s Guide
1
Introduction to the Agilent 5500
Overview of Agilent SPM System 17
SPM Basics 18
SPM Techniques 20
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM) 20
Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) 21
Intermittent Contact AFM 24
Acoustic AC (AAC) AFM 25
Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode 26
Top MAC Mode 27
Current Sensing Mode (CSAFM) 27
Force Modulation Microscopy (FMM) 28
Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM) 29
Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM) 29
Magnetic Force Microscopy (MFM) 29
Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM) 30
Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM) 30
The Agilent 5500 SPM is the ideal multiple-user research system for
Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM). As the high-performance Atomic
Force Microscope (AFM) flagship of Agilent’s product line, the 5500
SPM provides a wealth of unique technological features, including
precision temperature control and industry-leading environmental
control.
The Agilent 5500 SPM offers features and software for research in
materials science, polymers, nanolithography and general surface
characterization. With excellent ease of use, the 5500 SPM also affords
educators an unprecedented opportunity to introduce students to AFM
technology.
Agilent Technologies
16
Introduction to the Agilent 5500
1
Overview of Agilent SPM System
The main component of the Agilent 5500 SPM system is the microscope
(Figure 1), which includes the X/Y motion controls, scanner,
high-resolution probe/tip, and detector. The control system for the
microscope includes, at minimum, a high-speed computer, AFM
controller and Head Electronics Box. Optional components include
additional electronics, specialized scanners and probes for particular
SPM techniques, and an environmental enclosure to control acoustic
and vibration noise.
Figure 1 The Agilent 5500 SPM microscope, shown with optional
environmental chamber
In this User’s Guide we will begin with a brief introduction to Scanning
Probe Microscopy techniques. The sections that follow will show you
how to handle the 5500 SPM components and how to image in the
available modes.
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Introduction to the Agilent 5500
1
SPM Basics
Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) is a large and growing collection of
techniques for investigating the properties of a sample, at or near the
sample surface. The SPM instrument has a sharp probe (with radius of
curvature typically in the nanometers or tens of nanometers) that is in
near-contact, intermittent contact, or perpetual contact with the sample
surface.
An SPM is used to investigate sample properties at or near the sample
surface; that is, immediately beneath the surface (typically several
nanometers deep) and immediately above the surface (typically several
tens of nanometers high).
In SPM techniques, the sharp probe (tip) is scanned across a sample
surface, or the surface is scanned beneath the tip (Figure 2). Interactions
between the tip and sample are detected and mapped. Different
techniques sense different interactions, which can be used to describe
surface topography, adhesion, elasticity, electrostatic charge, etc.
Figure 2
Scanning Probe Microscopy diagram
The small size of the probe tip is key to the SPM’s high resolution.
However, its small size also means that the tip must be scanned in order
to image a significant area of the sample. SPM techniques use “raster
scanning,” in which high resolution actuators, usually made of
piezoelectric materials, move the probe across the sample and back over
each line of the image area. For each X/Y coordinate pair, the
interaction of the tip and sample is recorded as one data point. The
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Introduction to the Agilent 5500
1
collection of data points is then synthesized into the “SPM image,” a
3-dimensional map of the surface characteristic being examined.
The most common SPM images are topography images, in which the
third dimension, Z, for any given X/Y coordinates, is the relative height
of the sample surface. This interpretation implies that the sharp probe
does not deform the sample surface—the harder the sample surface, the
more accurate is this interpretation. In other words, the tip follows the
height variations of hard surface with higher fidelity than it does soft
surfaces.
Topography measurements are in general calibrated against height
standards.Therefore, topography images may be compared for
quantitative information, provided the systems have been correctly
calibrated and operated, and that the data is properly interpreted.
In other types of SPM images, the third dimension is a measure of the
relative strength of a detectable interaction between the probe and
sample. The image is usually recorded simultaneously with, and
displayed along side, the topography image of the same sample area.
This helps reveal any correlation between topography and the
interaction.
In some instances, the signal from the SPM’s detector is mapped
directly; for example, the deflection of the probe cantilever, or the
current through a metal tip. In other instances, the signal from the
detector serves as the input of a feedback system which attempts to
maintain the detector signal at a user-defined setpoint. The output of the
feedback system can then be mapped to construct the image.
SPM can also be used for “non-imaging techniques,” or
“nano-manipulation,” in which the probe is used to modify the sample
surface. For example, one can use the probe or tip to rearrange
nanometer-scale objects physisorbed on that surface. Essentially, the tip
serves as a nano-scale finger to interact with the sample.
Nano-manipulation is sometimes performed in the plane of the sample
surface (in-plane) and sometimes at right angles to this plane
(out-of-plane nano-manipulation). An example of out-of-plane
nano-manipulation is attaching the probe tip to the end of a
macromolecule on the sample surface, and pulling the molecule so that
its secondary or tertiary structure unfolds. This is now an extremely
active area of research, with applications extending to fields as diverse
as drug discovery and composite materials design.
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Introduction to the Agilent 5500
1
SPM Techniques
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM)
The earliest, widely-adopted SPM technique was Scanning Tunneling
Microscopy (STM). In STM, a bias voltage is applied between a sharp,
conducting tip and the sample. When the tip approaches the sample,
electrons “tunnel” through the narrow gap, either from the sample to the
tip or vice versa, depending on the bias voltage. Changes of only 0.1nm
in the separation distance cause an order of magnitude difference in the
tunneling current, giving STM remarkably high precision. The basic
STM schematic is shown in Figure 3.
Figure 3
Basic STM schematic
STM can image a sample surface in either constant current or constant
height mode, as described in Figure 4. In constant height mode, the tip
remains in a constant plane above the sample, and the tunneling current
varies depending on topography and local surface properties. The
tunneling current measured at each location constitutes the image. The
sample surface, however, must be relatively smooth in order for the
system to acquire useful information.
In constant current mode, a feedback loop is used to adjust the height of
the tip in order to hold the tunneling current at a setpoint value. The
scanner height measured at each location is then used to map the surface
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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Introduction to the Agilent 5500
topography. Because the feedback response requires time, constant
current mode is typically slower than constant height mode. However,
greater variations in height can be accommodated.
Figure 4 Constant Height mode STM (above) is faster but is limited to
smooth surfaces; Constant Current mode (below) is capable of
mapping larger variation in Z
For electron tunneling to occur, both the sample and tip must be
conductive or semi-conductive. Therefore, STM cannot be used on
insulating materials. This is one of the significant limitations of STM,
which led to the development of other SPM methods described below.
Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)
Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) can resolve features as small as an
atomic lattice, for either conductive or non-conductive samples. AFM
provides high-resolution and three-dimensional information, with little
sample preparation. The technique makes it possible to image in-situ, in
fluid, under controlled temperature and in other controlled
environments. The potential of AFM extends to applications in life
science, materials science, electrochemistry, polymer science,
biophysics, nanotechnology, and biotechnology.
In AFM, as shown in Figure 5, a sharp tip at the free end of a cantilever
(the “probe”) is brought into contact with the sample surface. The tip
interacts with the surface, causing the cantilever to bend. A laser spot is
reflected from the cantilever onto a position-sensitive photodiode
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
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Introduction to the Agilent 5500
1
detector. As the cantilever bends, the position of the laser spot changes.
The resulting signal from the detector is the Deflection, in volts. The
difference between the Deflection value and the user-specified Set Point
is called the “error signal.”
Figure 5
Basic AFM principles
Figure 6 shows the force interaction as the tip approaches the sample. At
the right side of the curve the tip and sample are separated by large
distance. As they approach, tip and sample atoms first weakly attract
each other. This zone of interaction is known as the “non-contact”
regime. Closer still, in the “intermittent contact” regime, the repulsive
van der Waals force predominates. When the distance between tip and
sample is just a few angstroms, the forces balance, and the net force
drops to zero. When the total force becomes positive (repulsive), the
atoms are in the “contact” regime.The various AFM techniques
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described below, can be generally described by their function within
these three domains.
Figure 6
Zones of interaction as the tip approaches the sample
The tip-sample interaction is complicated by additional forces,
including strong capillary and adhesive forces that attract the tip and
sample. The capillary force arises when water, often present when
imaging in the ambient environment, wicks around the tip, holding the
tip in contact with the surface. As long as the tip is in contact with the
sample, the capillary force should be constant because the fluid between
the tip and the sample is virtually incompressible. The total force that
the tip exerts on the sample is the sum of the capillary, adhesive and van
der Waals forces.
The van der Waals force counters almost any force that attempts to push
the atoms closer together. When the cantilever pushes the tip against the
sample, the cantilever bends rather than forcing the tip closer to the
sample atoms. The deflection, therefore, can be used as a reliable
indicator of surface topography.
Contact Mode AFM
In Contact Mode AFM, the AFM tip is attached to the end of a
cantilever with a low spring constant (typically 0.001 - 5 nN/nm). The
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tip makes gentle contact with the sample, exerting from ~0.1-1000 nN
force on the sample.
AFM can be conducted in either constant height or constant force
modes.
In constant height mode, the height of the scanner is fixed as it scans.
For small cantilever deflections (<500 nm) on hard surfaces, the error
signal (in volts) is used to generate an image that is sensitive to small
changes in topography, though actual topographic information is not
obtained. Constant height mode is often used for generating
atomic-resolution images of atomically flat surfaces, where the
cantilever deflections, and thus variations in applied force, are small. It
is also used for recording real-time images of changing surfaces, where
high scan speed is essential.
In constant force mode, the error signal is used as the input to a
feedback circuit which, after amplification, controls the z-height piezo
actuator. The feedback circuit responds to the surface topography,
keeping the cantilever deflection constant, and thus holding the total
force applied to the sample constant as well. The output of the feedback
circuit is used to generate the topography image.
Constant force mode is more typically used than constant height mode
as it enables imaging of greater surface height variability. The speed of
scanning is limited by the response time of the feedback circuit,
however. The resolution is lower than constant height mode as well, due
to inherent noise in the piezo feedback circuit itself.
NOTE
The signal path is actually the same for constant height and constant
force mode. In both cases, the error signal from the detector is the input
to the feedback loop, and the output of the feedback loop is the actual
deflection signal. In constant height mode, however, the gain for the
feedback loop is set to zero, effectively turning it off. Thus, the error
signal is passed through and read directly.
Intermittent Contact AFM
Intermittent Contact Mode AFM is typically referred to as AC Mode
due to the alternating contact of the tip to the surface. In AC Mode, the
cantilever is driven to oscillate, typically in sinusoidal motion, at or near
one of its resonance frequencies. When the cantilever and sample are
close during each oscillation cycle, the tip moves through an interaction
potential that includes long-range attractive and short term repulsive
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components.The complex tip-sample forces cause changes in the
amplitude, phase and resonance frequency of the oscillating cantilever.
Thus, topography, amplitude and phase can be collected simultaneously.
The phase and amplitude images may highlight physical properties that
are not readily discernible in the topographic map. For example, fine
morphological features are, in general, better distinguished in amplitude
and phase images.
The force of the oscillating tip is directed almost entirely in the Z axis;
thus, very little lateral force is developed and tip/sample degradation is
minimized. This benefit also makes it possible to obtain clear images of
soft samples.
A feedback system is employed to maintain the oscillation amplitude at
a setpoint value. The difference between the amplitude and set point,
called the “error signal,” is used as the input to the feedback system. The
output of the feedback loop is amplified and drives the Z-actuator. The
map of this output signal is called the “Amplitude Image,” which is
typically plotted side-by-side with the topography image. The
topography image is the voltage applied to the piezo required to keep
the oscillation amplitude constant, multiplied by the sensitivity of the
piezo in nanometers/volt.
AC Mode can operate in either the intermittent contact (net repulsive)
regime or the non-contact (net attractive) regime. During intermittent
contact, the tip is brought close to the sample so that it lightly contacts
the surface at the bottom of its travel, causing the oscillation amplitude
to drop.
The tip is usually driven by a sinusoidal force, with the drive frequency
typically at or near one of the cantilever’s resonance frequencies
(eigenfrequencies), and most often at the fundamental frequency.
Absent any tip-sample interactions, the cantilever oscillations are also
sinusoidal if the drive amplitude is small enough to keep the cantilever
motion small compared with the cantilever thickness.
Two methods are used to drive the cantilever oscillation: by indirect,
acoustic vibration (Acoustic Mode), or by direct vibration in a magnetic
field (MAC Mode).
Acoustic AC (AAC) AFM
In Acoustic AC (AAC) Mode AFM, a piezoelectric transducer shakes
the cantilever holder at or near its resonant frequency, typically 100 to
400 kHz. Interaction with the sample reduces the oscillation
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amplitude—this reduction is used as a feedback signal to maintain
constant amplitude of the cantilever motion. (Figure 7).
NOTE
Acoustic AC Mode is an option for the 5500 SPM and requires the
additional Mac Mode or MAC III controller.
Figure 7
Acoustic AC mode (AAC)
Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode
In Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode AFM, the back side of the cantilever is
coated with magnetic material. A solenoid applies an AC magnetic field
which is used to oscillate the cantilever. (Figure 8). MAC Mode is
typically cleaner and gentler than Acoustic AC Mode and is free from
spurious background signals that are somewhat common when AAC
Mode. The benefits are particularly pronounced when imaging in liquid.
NOTE
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
MAC Mode is an option for the 5500 SPM and requires the additional
MAC Mode or MAC III controller.
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Introduction to the Agilent 5500
Figure 8
1
Magnetic AC mode (MAC mode)
Top MAC Mode
In standard MAC Mode the magnetic coil is located in the sample plate,
below the sample. A variant of MAC Mode, known as Top MAC, places
the drive coil above the cantilever. This enables MAC Mode to be used
with or without a sample plate, for large samples, or for samples which
tend to dissipate the magnetic field enough to affect the resolution of
regular MAC Mode.
NOTE
Top MAC Mode is an option for the 5500 SPM and requires the
additional MAC Mode or MAC III controller, as well as a Top MAC nose
assembly.
Current Sensing Mode (CSAFM)
Current Sensing AFM (CSAFM) uses standard AFM Contact Mode,
including a special nose cone containing a pre-amp along with an
ultra-sharp AFM cantilever coated with a conducting film, to probe the
conductivity and topography of the sample. By applying a voltage bias
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between the conducting cantilever and sample, a current is generated
which is used to construct a conductivity image.
CSAFM is compatible with measurements in air, under controlled
environments, and measurements with temperature control. The
technique is useful in molecular recognition studies and can be used to
spatially resolve electronic and ionic processes across cell membranes.
It has proven useful in joint I/V spectroscopy and contact force
experiments as well as contact potential studies.
NOTE
CSAFM requires a 9 ° nose cone with a pre-amp and ultra-sharp,
conducting cantilevers.
Force Modulation Microscopy (FMM)
In Force Modulation Mode (FMM), the AFM tip is scanned in contact
with the sample. As in Contact Mode, a feedback loop is used to
maintain a constant cantilever deflection, and an additional, periodic
vertical oscillation applied to the tip. The amplitude and phase of
cantilever modulation resulting from the cantilever’s interaction with
the sample varies according to the elastic properties of the sample
(Figure 9), with particular sensitivity to elasticity and viscoelasticity.
Figure 9 Cantilever response to the applied modulation changes with
surface elasticity, as well as other characteristics
NOTE
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FMM requires MAC Mode or MAC III.
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Introduction to the Agilent 5500
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Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM)
Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM) is a derivative of Contact AFM with
the scan direction perpendicular to the long axis of the cantilever. In
LFM, the tip is constantly in contact with the sample surface. In addition
to its vertical deflection, the cantilever also twists in the scan direction.
As a result, along with the near-vertical deflection signal which is
usually present during Contact Mode AFM, the detector can also collect
a sizeable lateral defection (Friction) signal from the cantilever‘s
twisting motion. The strength of the lateral deflection signal is related to
the friction force between the sample surface and the tip; thus, LFM is
sometimes called Friction Force Microscopy.
The LFM signal is highly affected by topographic variations: the
rougher the sample surface, the more the topography will affect the
friction signal. To differentiate between friction and topography, two
images are typically captured side-by-side. One is constructed from the
detector signal during the trace (left-to-right tip motion) of each line in
the raster scan, and the other is mapped during retrace (right-to-left tip
motion). Then one of the two images is inverted and subtracted from the
other. This reduces the topographic artifacts in the LFM signal, leaving
an image of primarily frictional forces.
Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM)
In Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM), the tip is in contact
with the sample, and the cantilever is oscillated parallel to the sample
surface (as opposed to perpendicular oscillation in AC Mode). The
topography is determined by cantilever deflection, as in contact mode.
However, the lateral oscillation is also monitored, such that the
amplitude and phase can be imaged, as in standard AAC Mode. DLFM
is used in polymer studies as it is very sensitive to changes in surface
properties such as friction and adhesion.
NOTE
DLFM requires MAC Mode or MAC III.
Magnetic Force Microscopy (MFM)
Magnetic Force Microscopy (MFM) probes the force between a
ferromagnetic tip and a ferromagnetic or paramagnetic sample to image
domain structures. The system detects changes in the phase of the
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cantilever due to interatomic magnetic force that persists for greater
tip-sample separation than the van der Waals force.
A standard topography image can be collected for the same scanned
area, using AAC in Intermittent Contact mode. The two images can then
be displayed side-by-side to highlight any correlation between the
magnetic structure and topography.
NOTE
MFM requires MAC Mode or MAC III.
Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM)
Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM) is a qualitative method for
examining changes in the intrinsic, or applied, electrostatic field of a
sample surface. A voltage bias is applied between the tip and the
sample, allowing local static charge domains and charge carrier density
to be measured.
The system detects changes in the phase response of the cantilever
which are induced by the interaction of the conducting tip and the
electrostatic field of the sample surface. EFM images are usually
obtained by monitoring the phase change of the cantilever oscillation at
the applied frequency.
A standard topography image can be collected for the same scanned
area, using AAC (or MAC) in Intermittent Contact Mode. The two
images can then be displayed side-by-side to highlight any correlation
between the electrostatic response and topography.
NOTE
EFM is an option for the 5500 SPM and requires the additional MAC III
controller.
Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM)
Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM) is similar to EFM, but with the
addition of a feedback loop to maintain a DC tip bias that counteracts
the surface electrostatic force. The output from this feedback loop
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1
provides a quantitative analysis of changes in the applied or intrinsic
electrostatic field of the sample.
As in EFM mode, KFM uses a conductive tip and either standard AAC
or MAC Modes.
NOTE
KFM is an option for the 5500 SPM and requires the additional MAC III
controller.
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User’s Guide
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Agilent 5500 SPM Components
Microscope 34
Probes 35
Nose Assembly 36
One-Piece Nose Assemblies 36
Two-Piece Nose Assemblies 36
Scanner 38
Detector 40
Sample Plates 41
Video System 43
Head Electronics Box (HEB) 44
AFM Controller 45
Vibration Isolation Chamber 46
Software 47
System Options 48
MAC Mode 48
MAC III Mode 49
Liquid Cell 49
Temperature Control 50
Thermal K 50
Environmental Chamber 50
Glove Box 50
Electrochemistry 51
PicoTREC 51
PicoLITH 52
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Agilent 5500 SPM Components
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The major components for the Agilent 5500 SPM are shown in
Figure 10.
Figure 10 Components of the Agilent 5500 SPM
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Microscope
The microscope (Figure 11) includes the hinged support stand, coarse
z-axis motors, manual X/Y positioning micrometers, magnetic supports
for the sample plates, and interconnections for all electronics. The
support stand is hinged to allow easy access to the sample plate area.
Figure 11 5500 SPM microscope on support stand
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Probes
The SPM techniques described in Chapter 1, “Introduction to the
Agilent 5500,” are accomplished using either a wire tip (for STM) or,
for AFM imaging, a tip at the free end of a cantilever (a “probe”). STM
tips are made by cutting or electrochemical etching Platinum-Iridium or
tungsten wire. AFM cantilevers are fabricated from silicon or silicon
nitride with an integrated sharp tip at the end.
The selection of probe and tip geometry, cantilever spring constant, and
cantilever resonance frequencies will vary depending on application,
type of sample surface, imaging environment, and type of image being
generated. Tip geometry may be tetrahedral, pyramidal or conical. Tip
sharpness, defined by radius of curvature and sidewall angles, greatly
affects the resolution available with the probe.
Common cantilever shapes are triangular (V-shaped) and rectangular
(beam-shaped). Cantilever spring constants vary from a fraction of N/m
(soft) to tens or hundreds of N/m (stiff). Cantilevers for any type of AC
Mode imaging (ACAFM, MAC, etc.) will have resonance frequencies
ranging from tens to hundreds of kilohertz.
Cantilevers for particular imaging modes may be coated with reflecting,
conductive or magnetic materials.
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Nose Assembly
The nose assembly retains the cantilever and enables its motion. A
spring clip on the nose assembly secures the probe in place. The nose
assembly is held securely in the scanner by an O-ring.
One-Piece Nose Assemblies
The most widely used nose assemblies consist of a single unit which is
installed in the scanner (Figure 12). One-piece nose assemblies are
available for different modes and may include additional electronics
and/or components. For example, the Top MAC nose assembly includes
a coil that provides an oscillating magnetic field.
Additionally, nose assemblies are designed to hold the probe at either
nine degrees or eight degrees from horizontal. Nine degree nose
assemblies are used for general purpose imaging, while both nine and
eight degree nose assemblies are used for imaging in liquid.
Figure 12 One-piece nose assemblies. Clockwise from upper left: Top
MAC, CSAFM, Contact Mode, AC Mode, STM
Two-Piece Nose Assemblies
The all-metal, two-piece nose assembly (Figure 13) was designed to
simplify the process of inserting a cantilever. It also helps prevent
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damage to the scanner during installation of the nose assembly.
Currently the two-piece nose assembly is only available for AC
Mode/Contact Mode imaging.
CAUTION
The two-piece nose assembly cannot be used for imaging in liquid.
Figure 13 Two-piece nose cone with removal tool and assembly fixture
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Scanner
The Agilent 5500 is a tip-scanning system, in which the cantilever sits
on a scanner and is moved in raster fashion across the stationary sample.
The scanner includes one or more elements made from piezoceramic
material. When an electric field is applied to the piezo elements, they
elongate or contract. The motion of the tip in the Z axis, and raster
scanning in the X and Y axes, are all achieved by applying high voltages
to the scanner’s piezo element(s).
Agilent’s multi-purpose scanner modules contain the piezo elements,
the socket for the nose assembly, mounting for the detector, and
interconnections. The scanners are considered “multi-purpose” because
nose assemblies can be switched in and out of the scanner for different
imaging modes or environments.
Figure 14 A-type Scanner Module
Agilent SPMs use two types of scanners: A and B. A-type scanners are
most typically used with the Agilent 5500 SPM (B-type scanners can be
used though the video system will not be functional).
A-type scanners that use a 980 nm IR wavelength laser diode are also
available for those using inverted microscopes. Additional details for
aligning such lasers are in Chapter 4.
There are four A-type scanners:
• The small multi-purpose scanner includes four piezo plates (two
each for X and Y motion) and a small piezo tube (for Z motion). The
scanner provides scans up to 10 microns square. It is capable of
atomic-level resolution imaging.
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• The large multi-purpose scanner includes four piezo elements for X
and Y and provides scans up to 90 microns square. There are also 2
piezo tubes for Z motion. It provides high resolution and speed for
general use applications.
• The large multi-purpose scanner is also available with closed-loop
positioning, in which ultra-precise positioning sensors measure
displacement in the Z axis only, or X/Y/Z axes. Closed-loop
scanning provides superior positioning and more accurate z-position
and force control.
• An STM-specific scanner is purpose-built for Scanning Tunneling
Microscopy.
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Detector
The photodiode detector receives the reflection of the laser spot off the
back of the cantilever. The top and bottom halves of the detector
monitor the cantilever deflection (the Deflection signal) for AFM
imaging, while the two side halves report cantilever twisting (the
Friction signal) for lateral force imaging.
The detector mounts in the scanner, typically while the scanner is on the
microscope.Two thumbwheels on the detector enable alignment in both
directions. There are also four DIP switches to increase or decrease the
gain of the signal from the detector.
Figure 15 Detector assembly, top and bottom views
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Sample Plates
The Agilent 5500 SPM is designed to allow scanning from above the
sample. A variety of sample plates provide mounting options and
micro-environments for imaging (Figure 16). The standard sample plate
has a magnetic core that will securely hold samples mounted on
magnetic backings. Other plates are available for measurement in liquid,
temperature controlled imaging, for MAC and other applications.
Figure 16 Three sample plates: MAC Mode, liquid imaging, and Petri
dish
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The microscope stand is equipped with three magnetic posts from which
a sample plate is mounted (Figure 17). Micrometers enable manual X/Y
positioning with total travel of ±5 mm.
Figure 17 Sample plate on microscope stand
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Video System
The video system lets you locate regions of interest and align the laser
on the probe tip. It includes a camera and optics on an adjustable stand
(Figure 18) along with a separate illumination source (Figure 19). A
USB cable connects the camera to the computer.
Figure 18 Video system
Figure 19 Video system illuminator
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Head Electronics Box (HEB)
The Head Electronics Box (HEB) (Figure 20) reads the signals from the
detector and can display the Sum signal (sum of all four quadrants) and
the Deflection or Friction signals. The HEB also provides an oscillating
voltage for AC Mode imaging.
Figure 20 Head Electronics Box
The HEB rear connections are shown in Figure 21:
Figure 21 HEB back panel connectors and controls
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AFM Controller
The AFM Controller (Figure 22) provides the high voltage to the
piezoes and other control functions. Model N9605A is standard; Model
N9610A provides optional closed-loop scanning control.
Figure 22 AFM Controller (Model N9610A)
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Vibration Isolation Chamber
The isolation chamber (Figure 23) isolates the 5500 SPM from
vibration, air turbulence and acoustic noise which would adversely
affect imaging. It also, to an extent, helps control temperature
variability.
The enclosure is considered a “mandatory option,” as the improvements
it provides for imaging are essential for all but the most stringently
controlled environments.
Figure 23 Vibration isolation chamber
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Software
The Agilent 5500 SPM includes PicoView, a powerful software package
for controlling all aspects of alignment, calibration, imaging and more.
Also included is CameraView software for displaying video output, and
PicoImage software for image analysis and data manipulation.
To accomplish the steps in the following chapters you will need some
familiarity with PicoView. The software steps will be documented
briefly in this manual. For more information on the software please
review the on-line software manual.
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System Options
Many options are available for the Agilent 5500 SPM. As discussed
above, probes, nose assemblies and sample plates are available for
particular applications. Scanner options include large and small scan
ranges, closed-loop scanning, and a dedicated STM scanner. Other
options include:
MAC Mode
The MAC Mode options includes the hardware required for MAC
mode, which greatly improves imaging in fluid. The options include the
MAC controller (Figure 24), and the Top MAC nose assembly, AAC
nose assembly and/or MAC sample plate.
Figure 24 Mac Mode Controller
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MAC III Mode
MAC III Mode provides the benefits of regular MAC mode, provides
three lock-in amplifiers for flexibility, enables EFM and KFM imaging,
and provides “Q control” for more precise control of cantilever
oscillation.
Liquid Cell
The sample plate for liquid enables liquid imaging. A flow-through
liquid cell is also available with connections for tubing. A schematic
drawing of the liquid cell is shown below in Figure 25.
Figure 25 Schematic drawing of liquid cell showing scanner with nose
assembly, liquid cell, o-ring, sample and sample stage for liquid
imaging.
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Temperature Control
This option includes low and/or high temperature sample plates, a
temperature controller and related hardware for maintaining sample
temperature during imaging.
Thermal K
Thermal K provides a method for accurately determining the force
constant of the cantilever for highly accurate force measurements. By
measuring the thermal oscillation of the cantilever with no drive signal
applied, the cantilever force constant can be determined. The option
includes a separate acquisition card that is installed in an empty slot in
the system computer.
Environmental Chamber
The environmental chamber (Figure 26) allows imaging in controlled
atmospheres. Ports and fittings enable gases, liquids and probes to be
introduced to the chamber.
Figure 26 Environmental chamber
Glove Box
This small glove box, shown in Figure 27, can be attached directly to
the microscope body, offering greater environmental control. Since the
sample, piezo, and electronic parts are totally isolated from the imaging
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environment, it is possible to perform experiments under very reactive
conditions without damaging the system or the sample.
Figure 27 Glove box
Electrochemistry
The electrochemical SPM option includes a low-noise
potentiostat/galvanostat for in-situ EC-STM and EC-AFM. When
combined with temperature control, it is possible to obtain valuable
information about electrochemical processes that would otherwise be
inaccessible. Additional environmental controls allow imaging with no
dissolved oxygen in either aqueous or non-aqueous solutions.
PicoTREC
The PicoTREC molecular recognition tool kit (Figure 28) provides a
faster method than force-volume spectroscopy for distinguishing
molecular binding events. You can also use PicoTREC to explore
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dynamic properties of biological systems by imaging patterns of
molecular binding and adhesion on surfaces.
Figure 28 PicoTREC controller
PicoLITH
PicoLITH is an optional package for nanoscale positioning and
manipulation, and nanolithography. The PicoLITH option includes its
own documentation and is not covered in this manual.
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Agilent 5500 SPM
User’s Guide
3
Setting Up the Agilent 5500 SPM
Component and Facility Dimensions 53
Facility Requirements 55
Utilities 56
Noise and Facility Specifications 56
Acoustic Noise 56
Temperature and Humidity Variation 57
Connecting the Components 58
Guidelines for Moving the System 58
The Agilent 5500 SPM is typically installed by trained Agilent technical
staff. This chapter includes information on the facilities requirements
and preparation needed prior to installation. It also offers suggestions on
how to handle and re-connect the components should you ever need to
relocate the system after installation.
Component and Facility Dimensions
The Agilent 5500 SPM system includes, at minimum, the microscope,
computer, Head Electronics Box, and AFM controller. Options
purchased with your system may include additional hardware.
Here are the approximate dimensions of some of the components of the
Agilent 5500 SPM:
• 5500 Microscope: 330 mm W x 203 mm H x 330 mm D
(13 in W x 8 in H x 13 in D)
• Head Electronics Box: 203 mm W x 102 mm H x 203 mm D
(8 in W x 4 in H x 8 in D)
• Computer: 203 mm W × 432 mm H × 457 mm D
(8 in W x 17 in H x 18 in D)
• AFM Controller: 178 mm W x 483 mm H x 406 mm D
(7 in W x 19 in H x 16 in D)
• MAC Mode Controller: 254 mm W x 127 mm H x 254 mm D
(10 in W x 5 in H x 10 in D)
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Setting Up the Agilent 5500 SPM
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• MAC III Controller: 254 mm W x 127 mm H x 254 mm D
(10 in W x 5 in H x 10 in D)
• Vibration Isolation Chamber: 495 mm W × 940 mm H × 483 mm D
(19.5 in W x 37 in H x 19 in D)
The most common system configuration includes the 5500 SPM within
a vibration isolation chamber, with the controls on a separate table from
the rest of the components, as shown in Figure 29 (top and front views).
Keeping the chamber and microscope on a separate table helps to
minimize acoustic coupling from the control station. The isolation
chamber and microscope together weight approximately 250 pounds;
therefore, a solid table that can easily accommodate 300 pounds is
required.
Figure 29 Top and front views of Agilent 5500 SPM suspended inside
the optional isolation chamber, on the left. The control station is on
the right.
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Setting Up the Agilent 5500 SPM
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Facility Requirements
Following these guidelines for preparing the Agilent 5500 SPM facility
will ensure a smooth installation, will make using the system more
convenient and will improve system performance for the life of the
SPM:
• Minimize the acoustic noise level from all possible sources, such as
paging speakers, telephone ringer, air conditioner, especially during
data acquisition.
• Install the equipment as far away as possible from facility equipment
such as air handlers and pumps.
• Reduce the exposure of the SPM to air flow or dramatic temperature
changes. Minimal temperature variation is desirable to minimize
thermal drift during measurements and to minimize settling time..
• Use dedicated power outlets with surge protection (strongly
recommended).
• Include a set of organized shelves and drawers for system
components.
• If gold substrates are frequently used, a hydrogen flame-annealing
station is recommended.
• Appropriate water sources should be available for temperature
control and biological experiments.
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Utilities
The following table summarizes the utility requirements for the Agilent
5500 SPM.
Table 1 Agilent 5500 SPM utility requirements
Configuration
Agilent 5500 SPM
Electrical
1600 W; single phase; 100-120 V or
220-240 VAC; 5 A; 50-60 Hz
Surge protection
Strongly recommended; minimum 7 outlets
Air for isolation chamber
Not required
Internet connection
Recommended
Noise and Facility Specifications
Acoustic Noise
The semiconductor manufacturing industry has developed a
standardized set of one-third octave band velocity spectra, called
vibration criterion curves (Figure 30), to define acceptable
environmental noise. For operation of the Agilent 5500 SPM, facility
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acoustic noise should be less than 75 dBc (Criterion C). Use of the
vibration isolation chamber will help considerably in meeting this goal.
Figure 30 Vibration criterion curves and ISO guidelines
Temperature and Humidity Variation
Changes in temperature and humidity will affect both resolution and
repeatability of imaging. Temperature variation should be limited to ±2
degrees Fahrenheit. Humidity variation should not exceed ±20 % RH.
Locating the instrument away from vents and air handlers will help meet
this goal.
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Connecting the Components
The cabling for the standard 5500 SPM is shown in Figure 31. Other
cabling configurations are included in Appendix A.
Figure 31 Cabling for basic 5500 SPM configuration
CAUTION
Always make sure that all cables are connected before turning on any of
the components. Failure to do so can result in damage to equipment.
Guidelines for Moving the System
Should you ever need to relocate the system, here are important
guidelines which must be followed to ensure safe operation:
• The new location must meet all of the facility specifications
described above.
• Turn off all components before disconnecting cables.
• Disconnect all cables before moving any components.
• Remove the scanner, detector and sample from the 5500 SPM before
moving the microscope base.
• Remove the microscope base from the vibration isolation chamber
and transport both separately.
• Follow the cabling diagrams exactly, being sure to connect all cables
before powering up the components.
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Setting Up the Scanner Assembly 59
One-Piece Nose Assembly 60
Inserting the One-Piece Nose Assembly 60
Removing the One-Piece Nose Assembly 62
Inserting a Probe in the One-Piece Nose Assembly 64
Two-Piece Nose Assembly 67
Inserting the Body of the Two-Piece Nose Assembly 67
Removing the Body of the Two-Piece Nose Assembly 68
Inserting a Probe in the Two-Piece Nose Assembly 69
Inserting the Scanner and Connecting Cables 70
Aligning the Laser 72
Inserting and Aligning the Detector 79
Mounting the Sample 83
Using the Video System 86
Care and Handling of the Probes and Scanner 90
Probes 90
Nose Assembly 90
Two-Piece Nose Cone Cleaning 90
Scanner 90
The Agilent 5500 SPM is capable of imaging in many different modes.
Several steps of the imaging process are similar or identical, however,
for all modes. This chapter will cover the steps that are common to most
imaging procedures.
Setting Up the Scanner Assembly
As mentioned earlier, the Agilent 5500 SPM is a tip-scanning system, in
which the probe is raster-scanned across the stationary sample. When an
electric field is applied to the scanner’s piezo elements, they elongate or
contract, depending on the direction of the field.The Z-motion of the tip
is achieved by elongation or contraction of the piezo element in the
scanner. X/Y raster scanning is achieved by applying alternating
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voltages to opposite piezo elements in the scanner so that one element
elongates and the other contracts.
CAUTION
The thickness of the piezo elements determines how much they will
expand or contract per applied unit voltage. They are necessarily thin to
provide scanning resolution. If dropped, the scanner’s piezo elements
WILL break. Cracked or broken piezoelectrodes will result in abnormal
imaging. Proper handling is essential to preserve the long expected life of
your multi-purpose scanner.
The scanner mounting fixture supplied with your system is designed to
keep the scanner and its components safe during handling (Figure 32).
The main cutout safely holds the scanner, while the smaller cutout
safely holds a nose assembly. A magnetic disk keeps additional tools
close at hand.
Figure 32 Scanner mounting fixture with nose assembly and spring key;
scanner in mounting fixture
The next sections will describe how to safely handle the scanner
components for long life and excellent imaging.
One-Piece Nose Assembly
Inserting the One-Piece Nose Assembly
The nose assembly is held in the scanner by an O-ring around its
circumference. To insert a nose assembly, first place the scanner in the
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scanner mounting fixture (Figure 32). Place the nose assembly in the
socket on top of the scanner, aligning its contact pins if applicable.
Applying even, steady, vertical pressure at the edges of the nose
assembly, seat it into the socket, as shown in Figure 33.
Figure 33 Applying even, vertical pressure at the edges to insert the
nose assembly.
CAUTION
Push evenly and straight down when inserting the nose assembly. Small
off-axis forces will create LARGE torques about the anchor point for the
piezoes, where most breakage occurs.
Do NOT push down on the top of the nose assembly as this will damage
the spring clip and/or glass window.
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Removing the One-Piece Nose Assembly
A removal tool is included with your system to limit damaging, lateral
forces on the scanner while removing the nose assembly. The following
is the only acceptable procedure for removing the nose assembly:
Figure 34 Nose assembly removal tool
1 Place the scanner in the scanner mounting fixture.
2 Carefully slide the removal tool onto the nose assembly, ensuring
that the opening seats on both sides of the nose.
3 Position your thumb on the flat surface of the removal tool and your
fingers on BOTH sides of the extraction arm.
4 Gently pull up with your fingers while pushing down with your
thumb (Figure 35).
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5 Once the nose assembly is clear of the scanner you can remove it
from the tool.
Figure 35 Using the nose assembly removal tool
CAUTION
Do not use the nose removal tool to insert a nose assembly. It is not
designed for this purpose.
CAUTION
DO NOT use tweezers to remove the nose assembly (Figure 36).Tweezers
can create a pivot point to lever the nose out of the scanner, placing large
lateral forces on the piezo assembly. The nose assembly removal tool is
the only acceptable method for extracting the nose from the scanner.
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Figure 36 Do not use tweezers to remove a nose assembly. Doing so
can place damaging lateral forces on the scanner.
Inserting a Probe in the One-Piece Nose Assembly
Agilent nose assemblies are designed with a spring and guides to retain
the probe in the proper position for imaging. A spring key (Figure 37) is
included with the system to let you safely hold back the spring while
inserting the probe. Figure 38 shows a properly positioned probe.
Figure 37 Spring key
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Figure 38 Probe properly situated on AFM nose assembly
AFM probe tips are extremely delicate and can break when dropped
even a short distance. The following instructions include several helpful
tips that will simplify the process of inserting a probe in the nose
assembly:
1 Mount the nose assembly in the scanner.
2 Place the scanner into the scanner mounting fixture.
3 Grasp the tweezers in the orientation shown in Figure 39.
4 Gently grasp the probe from its sides, applying just enough pressure
to secure it in the tweezers. It is often easier to take the probe from
the case, as demonstrated in Figure 39, than to try to grasp the probe
with the case sitting on the desk or table. This method allows the
probe to be held at an angle, making it easier to insert it into the nose
assembly.
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Figure 39 Holding the tweezers as shown, remove a probe from the
protective case
5 With your free hand, use the spring key to rock back the retainer
spring (Figure 40).
6 Place the probe between the guides such that a little more than half
of the probe extends over the lens (placement will vary depending on
the type and shape of the probe). Figure 40 shows this process. The
final probe position should be as shown in Figure 38 on page 65.
Figure 40 Hold back the retaining spring while placing the probe
7 Gently lower the spring clip to hold the probe in place.
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The retainer spring can snap back with enough force to damage the
probe, so be sure to release the spring slowly and gently.
Two-Piece Nose Assembly
The two-piece nose assembly was designed to simplify the process of
inserting a probe through the use of an assembly fixture (Figure 41).
The nose assembly consists of a body, which inserts into the scanner,
and a flat, stainless steel disk which holds the cantilever. The disk is
held to the body magnetically and can be separated by holding the disk
at its edges and gently pulling it from the body.
Figure 41 Two-piece nose assembly, removal tool and assembly fixture.
The nose assembly disk is shown on the fixture; the body is shown to
its left.
Inserting the Body of the Two-Piece Nose Assembly
As with the one-piece nose assembly, the body of the two-piece
assembly is held in the scanner by an O-ring. To insert the body, first
place the scanner in the scanner mounting fixture (Figure 32 on
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page 60). Place the body in the socket on top of the scanner, aligning its
contact pins.
Applying even, steady, vertical pressure with your fingers to seat the
body into its socket.
CAUTION
It is essential to push evenly and straight down when inserting the nose
assembly. Small off-axis forces will create LARGE torques about the
anchor point for the piezoes, where most breakage occurs.
Removing the Body of the Two-Piece Nose Assembly
As with the one-piece nose assembly, a tool (Figure 42) is included to
remove the body of the two-piece assembly from the scanner. The tool
limits damaging, lateral forces on the scanner during the removal
process. The following is the only acceptable procedure for removing
the nose assembly body:
Figure 42 Two-piece nose assembly removal tool
1 Place the scanner in the scanner mounting fixture.
2 Remove the nose assembly disk from the body by gently pulling it
up from its edges.
3 Carefully slide the removal tool onto the nose assembly, ensuring
that the opening seats on both sides.
4 Position your thumb on the flat surface of the removal tool and your
fingers on BOTH sides of the extraction arm.
5 Gently pull up with your fingers while pushing down the your
thumb.
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Inserting a Probe in the Two-Piece Nose Assembly
AFM probe tips are extremely delicate and can break when dropped.
Follow these instructions to safely insert a probe in the nose assembly:
1 Place the nose assembly disk on the assembly fixture, as shown in
Figure 43. Make sure that it aligns with the center disk and two small
alignment pins.
Figure 43 Two-piece nose assembly disk on fixture
2 Using tweezers, gently grasp a probe from its sides, applying just
enough pressure to secure it in the tweezers.
3 Move the assembly fixture lever to the right, which will slightly
separate the nose assembly disk (Figure 44).
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Figure 44 Move the lever to open the nose assembly disk.
4 Place the probe under the copper-colored spring clip on the nose
assembly disk. Use the alignment guides in the fixture to help locate
the probe laterally.
5 A small alignment spot on the fixture (Figure 43 on page 69)
indicates the proper location for the cantilever tip. Place the probe
such that the tip is close as possible to this spot.
6 Move the lever to the left to close the nose assembly disk.
7 Use the tweezers to finely adjust the probe such that the cantilever is
aligned over the alignment spot. Only grasp the probe from the sides
to avoid damaging the cantilever.
8 Grasping the nose assembly disk from the edges, remove it from the
fixture and align it on the nose assembly body already in the scanner.
Inserting the Scanner and Connecting Cables
At this point you should have the probe, nose assembly and scanner all
assembled into one unit.
1 Make sure there is adequate clearance below the scanner socket in
the middle of the microscope.
2 Place the scanner assembly into the scanner socket, with the
scanner’s frosted screen facing up and forward (Figure 45).
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Figure 45 Placing scanner assembly into microscope
3 Finger-tighten the knob on the right side of the microscope to lock
the scanner in position.
4 Attach the high voltage (red) and low voltage (blue) cables on either
side of the scanner to the sockets on the microscope base. The cables
are color coded to avoid confusion. If you are using a closed-loop
scanner, connect its third cable to the C/L socket on the rear of the
Head Electronics Box.
CAUTION
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Aligning the Laser
The next step is to ensure that the scanner’s laser spot is aligned to
reflect off of the cantilever. Several methods can be used to do so. One
method is to place a white card or piece of paper under the scanner to
make the laser spot visible. By moving the laser you can then align it on
the probe—when this happens the probe will block the laser spot, and
the spot will no longer be visible on the paper.
1 Place a white piece of paper or business card on the table below the
microscope. If using a 980 nm IR scanner, use an IR sensor card in
place of a business card (see Figure 53). The operational range of the
sensor card is 700 nm to 1400 nm.
2 Turn on the Head Electronics Box, which will activate the laser. You
should be able to see the red laser spot on the paper (Figure 46).
Figure 46 Aligning laser spot over white paper.
The laser alignment knobs are located on the top of the scanner
(Figure 47). The front-to-back knob moves the laser spot toward the
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cantilever tip (counterclockwise) or away from it. The left-to-right knob
adjusts the lateral position.
Figure 47 Use the scanner knobs to position the laser spot
3 Rotate the front-to-back knob clockwise to move the laser spot onto
the cantilever chip (Diagram B in Figure 48). When the laser reaches
the chip it will be blocked and will no longer be visible on the paper.
You should only need to turn the knob a few rotations.
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Figure 48 Steps to aligning laser on cantilever beam tip
4 Rotate the front-to-back knob counterclockwise until the spot just
reappears on the paper. The spot is now at the edge of the chip
(Diagram C in Figure 48).
5 Rotate the left-to-right knob to position the laser on the cantilever
(Diagram D in Figure 48). As the laser passes over the cantilever it
will disappear and reappear in rapid succession. You should now see
the laser spot on the scanner’s frosted glass.
6 Turn the front-to-back knob counterclockwise to move the spot
down the cantilever, toward the tip until the spot on the frosted glass
disappears (and the spot reappears on the paper) (Diagram E in
Figure 48).
7 Turn the front-to-back knob clockwise slightly to position the laser
just on the cantilever tip (Diagram F in Figure 48). The spot will
reappear on the ground glass.
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The process is similar for triangular-shaped cantilevers, with the
exception that the laser will be obscured twice as it moves left to right
(over the two beams). The process is shown in Figure 49.
Figure 49 Steps to aligning the laser on triangular cantilevers
A potential error during the alignment process is to turn either of the
positioning controls too far in the wrong direction and to thereby lose
the laser spot altogether. Figure 50 shows the positioning controls when
they are well out of alignment. The left-to-right knob will be visibly
tilted when the lateral alignment is far out, and the laser housing will be
moved to one side when the front-to-back alignment is out. The easiest
way to recover is to roughly center both controls again, moving the laser
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back to the center of its travel in both directions. Doing so should make
the laser spot reappear.
Figure 50 Laser alignment control when far out of alignment
In some cases, particularly with highly reflective samples, you can use
the 5500 SPM’s video system to focus on the cantilever and align the
laser spot (Figure 51). The laser spot will be visible in the video image
until it crosses the cantilever, so you can use a similar procedure to the
paper method above. See “Using the Video System” later in this chapter.
Figure 51 Using video system to align laser
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Figure 52 shows how the position of the laser on the cantilever affects
the position of the laser. Due to the variation of cantilever types and
vendors, the position of the cantilever needs to be optimized per tip.
Figure 52 Laser alignment
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Note that the IR sensor card should be used for coarse positioning of the
laser if using the 980 nm IR scanners.
Figure 53 Coarse laser alignment for IR scanners using sensor card
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Inserting and Aligning the Detector
As mentioned earlier, the photodiode detector records changes in the
position of the laser spot as the cantilever passes over the sample
surface. As shown in Figure 54, the detector senses the laser’s
movement between its four quadrants, reporting the AFM (vertical
deflection), LFM (lateral, or friction), and SUM signals.
Figure 54 Photodiode detector operation
To install the photodiode detector, insert it into the scanner until it stops
(Figure 55). Plug the detector cable into the Detector socket on the
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microscope base. You can install the detector into the scanner before or
after installing the scanner in the microscope base.
Figure 55 Inserting the detector module into the scanner
The Gain Switches on the detector determine whether the laser signal
is amplified before going to the rest of the electronics. Up (away
from the adjustment wheels) means no amplification, down means
the signal is amplified. Each switch represents one of the four
quadrants in the photodetector. All switches should be either up for
normal operation, or down to increase the signal for poorly reflective
cantilevers.
Detector alignment is completed through the PicoView software:
1 Launch PicoView. The Laser Alignment window (as well as other
windows) will open, displaying the position of the laser spot on the
photodiode detector (Figure 56). You can also click the Laser
Alignment toolbar button to open the window. The meter to the right
shows the Sum of all four quadrants. The Deflection signal is the
difference between the top and bottom halves divided by the Sum.
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The Friction signal is the difference between the left and right halves
divided by the Sum.
NOTE
These signals can also be seen on the Head Electronics Box where Meter
A is the Sum signal reading and Meter B shows Deflection and Friction
(LFM) depending on the state of the switch directly below the meter.
Figure 56 Laser Alignment window in PicoView
2 Use the knobs on the detector to move the laser spot to the center of
the four quadrants. The front (deflection) knob moves the spot up
(clockwise) or down (counterclockwise). The left (friction) knob
moves the spot to the left (clockwise) or to the right
(counterclockwise).
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3 For Contact Mode, The dotted yellow line shows the recommended
vertical alignment of the laser prior to approaching the sample.
Figure 57 Align spot to yellow, dotted line for Contact Mode
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Mounting the Sample
The Agilent 5500 SPM accepts a wide variety of sample plates,
including specialized plates for imaging in liquid, in controlled
temperature, etc. To use a sample plate:
1 Mount the sample to the sample plate. In general, samples should be
held in place securely enough to prevent drift or creep during
measurement, but not so firmly as to induce stress in the sample.
Several mounting methods are available. A common approach is to
mount the sample on a magnetically attractive backing which can
then be held by the magnet on the standard sample plate. Large, flat
samples can be held down using the clips from the liquid cell plate.
Double-back tape can also be used, though the tape tends to deform
easily and can lead to creep during imaging.
CAUTION
Verify that there is enough space below the scanner and probe that they
will not contact the sample plate once it is mounted. Contact with the
plate will damage the probe and sample and could also damage the
scanner.
It is recommended that you move the scanner up 100 microns or more
whenever changing a probe or plate to avoid damage.
2 Place the sample plate’s front alignment tab over the front alignment
pin, as in image A of Figure 58.
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Figure 58 Mounting a sample plate.
3 Place the second alignment tab over the alignment pin as in image B
of Figure 58.
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4 Let the magnets on the three posts gently engage the sample plate to
hold it in place, as in image C of Figure 58.
CAUTION
The sample plate magnets are quite strong and, if allowed to, will snap
the sample plate into position, which may perturb the sample. Holding the
plate at the edges while engaging the magnets will control this
movement.
5 For certain measurement you will need to connect the EC/MAC
cable from the sample plate to the socket on the underside of the
microscope stand. The 2-pin EC cable provides bias to the sample.
The 6-pin MAC connector provides signal to the magnetic coil for
MAC Mode.
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Using the Video System
The Agilent 5500 SPM includes a USB-based video system for viewing
the tip and sample. The video system’s optics and optics in the scanner
together provide optical magnification of 3.8X - 24.3X to the camera.
The video system’s illuminator is a separate box (Figure 59) connected
to the video system by a fiber light pipe. The light pipe can be separated
from the illuminator and/or optics by loosening the knobs at either of its
ends. Turn on the illuminator with the switch on the front of the
illuminator box. Increase intensity by turning the Illumination Level
knob clockwise, or decrease it by turning it counterclockwise.
NOTE
The video system camera automatically adjusts to the contrast level.
Above a certain level turning up the illumination will no longer have any
effect, as the camera will compensate to counteract the increased
intensity.
Figure 59 Turn on the illuminator and adjust intensity
NOTE
For critical measurements use the video system to align the sample, then
turn off the illuminator to minimize system noise.
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The z-position knob (Figure 60) lets you raise and lower the video
system optics. Typically the optics are situated 3.5 inches above the
scanner; this position is set by a stop ring on the pole. You may need to
adjust this level to accommodate the Environmental Chamber or other
optional hardware.
Figure 60 Adjusting the z-position
To adjust the lateral position of the video system relative to the scanner,
turn the knobs on the front and right side of the optics assembly
(Figure 61). Turn the front knob clockwise to move the field-of-view
backward, and counterclockwise to move it forward . Turn the side knob
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clockwise to move the field-of-view to the right, and counterclockwise
to move left.
Figure 61 Adjusting lateral position of the video system
Twist the Zoom control (Figure 62) to the left to increase the zoom, or
to the right to decrease zoom.
Figure 62 Adjusting zoom
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Choose Controls > CameraView to view the video output from the
camera (Figure 63).
Figure 63 CameraView video window showing tip and sample.
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Care and Handling of the Probes and Scanner
Probes
Always store probes at room temperature in their protective cases.
Handle probes gently with tweezers, following the procedures described
earlier in this chapter.
If a probe is dropped it may very well be damaged. You can check
whether the cantilever is intact by viewing it through a magnifier.
If you are using more than one type of probe, be sure to store them
separately in well-marked cases to avoid confusion.
Nose Assembly
Store nose assemblies in a clean, dry location where they will not be
subject to excessive humidity, temperature changes or contact.
Dirt, grease or spots on the glass window of the nose assembly can
interfere with the optical path of the laser. Regularly clean the window
with cotton or a soft tissue (dry, wetted with water, or with ethanol).
The glass is glued to the nose cone with chemically resistive epoxy, so if
the window breaks there is no easy way to replace it and the entire nose
assembly will likely need to be replaced.
Only remove the nose assembly from the scanner using the Nose
Assembly Removal Tool, with the scanner placed upright in its fixture.
Do NOT use the removal tool to install the nose assembly.
Two-Piece Nose Cone Cleaning
The two-piece nose cone is not to be used in liquid because it does not
have a glass window to prevent liquid from getting to the scanner. After
it is removed from a scanner, the two-piece nose cone may be cleaned
with a low oxidizing organic solvent such as ethyl alcohol.
Scanner
Between uses, remove the scanner from the microscope and store it on
its fixture or in the storage case, in a location where it will not be subject
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to excessive humidity, temperature changes or contact. Agilent
recommends that scanners be stored in a desiccator.
The scanner contains very brittle and fragile piezoelectric ceramics.
Applying excessive lateral force while exchanging nose assemblies, or
dropping the scanner even a short distance onto a hard surface, will
damage the scanner. If the nose assembly housing becomes loose or can
be wiggled when in place, contact Agilent support for assistance.
Cracked or broken piezoelectrodes will result in abnormal imaging.
Damage to the scanner such as those described above are NOT covered
by the standard warranty.
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Contact Mode Imaging
Setting Up for Contact Mode Imaging
Constant Force Mode 93
Constant Height Mode 100
Fine-Tuning the Image 100
Setpoint 100
Gains 101
Scan Settings 101
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In Contact Mode imaging, the AFM tip is brought into gentle contact
with the sample and then scanned in raster fashion across the sample
surface. The system will either maintain a constant force on the tip, for
most Contact Mode measurements, or will maintain the tip at a constant
height, for high resolution imaging of very flat surfaces. It is typical in
Contact Mode to image deflection, friction and/or topography, though
other signals may be imaged as well.
In this chapter we will outline the steps to making Contact Mode images
with a system that is calibrated and properly set up. Additional factors
may affect the quality of images produced in Contact Mode. To
understand more about these factors please be sure to read the PicoView
software documentation and Agilent training materials.
NOTE
This chapter references material in Chapter 4, “Preparing for Imaging.” Be
sure to review and understand Chapter 4 before continuing with Contact
Mode.
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Setting Up for Contact Mode Imaging
Contact Mode imaging can be completed with any of the multi-purpose
scanners, using most any AFM probe and nose assembly. Contact Mode
tips, however, are designed specifically for this application, with lower
resonance frequency, softer cantilevers.
Constant Force Mode
In Constant Force Mode, a feedback loop between the Head Electronics
Box (HEB) and the controller maintains a constant deflection of the tip
based on the specified Setpoint voltage. The error signal, which is the
difference, measured in volts by the photodetector, between the Setpoint
and actual cantilever deflection, is read as the Deflection.
To begin imaging, follow the steps you learned in Chapter 4:
1 Insert the nose assembly into the scanner.
2 Insert a probe into the nose assembly.
3 Place the scanner in the microscope and connect its cables.
4 Align the laser on the cantilever.
5 Insert and align the detector.
6 Prepare the sample and mount the sample plate.
Then:
7 In the PicoView software choose Mode > Contact.
8 Choose Controls > CameraView to open the CameraView video
window.
9 Press the Close switch on the HEB to raise the sample until the tip is
close to, but not touching, the sample.
10 Viewing the video window, bring the tip and sample very close to
contact:
a Adjust the focus and x-y alignment of the video system such that
the tip is in sharp focus (Figure 64).
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Figure 64 Tip in focus through video system
b Lower the focal plane just slightly below the tip by turning the
Z-position control toward you until the tip is slightly out of focus
(Figure 65).
Figure 65 Lower focal plane just below tip
c
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Using the Close switch on the HEB, raise the sample until the
sample comes nearly into focus. The tip should now be just above
the sample surface.
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CAUTION
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Raise the sample slowly and carefully to avoid collision with the sample.
Hard contact between the tip and the sample can damage either or both.
11 Locate the area of interest on the sample by manually moving the
X/Y stage control micrometers (Figure 66) while watching the video
window.
Figure 66 Stage control micrometers
CAUTION
If your sample has tall features or steps, you may need to raise the
scanner slightly to avoid contacting features as you move the stage.
12 Next you will “approach” the sample, bringing the tip into contact
with the surface. To ensure that the contact will be gentle, verify that
the Setpoint voltage is set appropriately:
a Note the Deflection reading on the HEB front panel, or in
PicoView’s Laser Alignment window (both will display the same
value). This is the current cantilever deflection, stated in volts.
b In PicoView’s Servo window, enter a Setpoint value slightly
more positive than the current Deflection reading. This sets the
deflection that the feedback loop will achieve and maintain.
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Figure 67 Servo window showing Setpoint voltage and Gains
NOTE
If the Servo window is not already open, choose Controls >Imaging to
open it. The Scan and Motor and Real Time Images windows will also
open at the same time.
13 Click the Approach button in PicoView’s toolbar
. The
system will raise the sample until the deflection reaches the Setpoint
value.
NOTE
The Approach Range, the distance that the system will move the scanner
to try to contact the surface, is set in the Microscope Setup window
(Controls > Setup > Microscope). A smaller approach range will make
the approach faster.
The indicator on the right side of the servo window shows the possible
displacement range for the Z piezo actuator. The indicator will be red
when the scanner is too far from (or too close to) the surface for the
system to maintain the Setpoint. The indicator will turn green when
contact is made and the Setpoint is maintained. A yellow bar will show
the position of the piezo within its available range of motion.
The center of the range is defined as “zero,” with positive values
indicating piezo displacement away from the sample, and negative
values being toward the sample. In Figure 67, the positive voltage
shows that the piezo is maintaining the setpoint while it is slightly above
the center point of its range.
14 Also in the Servo window make sure that the I Gain and P Gain are
set to 10 %. These gains dictate how quickly the system will react to
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changes in tip deflection in order to maintain constant force. 10 % is
a good starting value; more information on optimizing the gains is
in“Gains" on page 101.
15 In the Scan and Motor window, select the Scan tab (Figure 68).
Figure 68 Scan and Motor window: Scan tab
16 Enter a scan Speed, stated in Lines/Second (ln/s). A typical starting
value is 1-2 ln/s.
17 Select a resolution from the X list. 256 is a good starting value,
providing ~11 nm/pixel resolution for the 3 micron scan size selected
in Figure 68.
18 The grid in the Scan and Motor window shows the range of motion
of the X and Y piezo actuators. The yellow square represents the size
and location of the scan, based on the current scan settings. Change
the Size (in microns) to set the scan size in both X and Y. Enter X
Offset and/or Y Offset values to move the scan region. You can also
click and drag the yellow box to move the region. Click the “+”
button to return the offsets to zero.
19 In the Realtime Images window, choose to display Topography,
Deflection and Friction. Click the “+” button of the window to add a
buffer. To set what each buffer will display, right-click inside the
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buffer frame, then select the Input Signal from the list (Figure 69).
The list will vary depending on the imaging mode.
Figure 69 Selecting the Input signals in the Realtime Images window
20 In the Scan and Motor window, click the Down blue arrow to
initiate a scan starting at the top of the grid. Click the Up blue arrow
to initiate the scan from the bottom up (Figure 70). The image maps
will begin to be rendered in the Realtime Images window.
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Figure 70 Scan and Motor window after scan has been initiated
As the tip moves across the first scan line, the system will adjust the
voltage on the z-piezo actuator to maintain constant force (as specified
by the Setpoint value).
NOTE
The important parameter is the difference between the Deflection setting
(shown on the HEB) before beginning the approach and the initial
Setpoint value. A Setpoint of +1 V could be too low if the initial Deflection
was -0.1 V but too high if the initial Deflection reading was -2 V.
For each pixel, the system will record and plot the error signal (the
difference in volts between the surface-induced deflection and the
Setpoint) as the Deflection Image (in volts).
The correction signal (the voltage that the feedback loop applies to the
z-piezo to maintain the deflection at the Setpoint) is scaled by the piezo
sensitivity (nm/V) and plotted as Topography (in nanometers).
As the tip passes over regions of varying friction it will twist in the scan
direction as well as deflecting in the vertical axis. The detector senses
change in the cantilever‘s twisting motion and outputs it as the lateral
deflection (Friction) signal, which is plotted as the Friction image (in
volts). Changes in lateral force on the tip can be caused either by
changes in frictional properties across the sample or by variations in
topography. The Friction signal will therefore be a convolution of these
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two components. Comparing the friction and topography images helps
to differentiate the impact of topography versus friction.
At the end of each scan line the system will “retrace” the scan line until
it once again reaches the beginning. The scanner will then advance one
line width and another line will be scanned.
Depending on the Frames setting in the Scan and Motor window, the
system will either scan once and stop, or it will scan infinitely,
overwriting the previous scan each time. You can also choose to scan
for a specific number of frames. To stop the scan, click the red STOP
circle that will replace the Up or Down arrow when you start a scan
(Figure 68 on page 97).
Constant Height Mode
In Constant Height Mode the system maintains the tip in a plane above
the surface. It is functionally the same as Constant Force Mode, except
that the feedback circuit gains are set very low so that the system does
not react to changes in tip deflection.
To image in Constant Height Mode, in the Servo window set the I and P
gains to 0.1 %. This will effectively cause the system to no longer adjust
the tip force. This lack of feedback reduces signal noise, enabling
atomic-level resolution imaging of very flat samples. The scan speed
can also be faster since the system will no longer attempt to react to
changes in deflection.
The error signal (in volts) is used to generate an image that is sensitive
to small changes in topography.
Fine-Tuning the Image
Besides the sharpness of the scanning tip, the quality of imaging in
Contact Mode is largely dependent on three factors: the Setpoint
voltage, feedback gains, and scan settings.
Setpoint
When the Setpoint is too negative, the system will continue as if contact
is established between the tip and sample even if it actually is not. In
this case, the tip will not accurately trace surface topography—in the
extreme, the topography image will appear entirely flat. Making the
Setpoint more positive increases the force applied to the sample by the
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tip. Higher force can place undue wear on the tip and, in the extreme,
can damage the tip or sample.
The optimal Setpoint value, which will vary per sample and per probe,
places enough force on the tip to accurately trace the topography
without placing unnecessary force on the tip. A good method for setting
the Setpoint is as follows:
1 With your cursor still in the Setpoint box, press the Down arrow on
your keyboard to make the Setpoint more negative. At some point,
the Setpoint voltage will drop so low that the tip will leave contact
with the sample—when it breaks free, the indicator in the Servo
window will change from green to red.
2 Pressing the Up arrow on your keyboard, raise the Setpoint again
until the tip just regains contact with the sample. This is the lowest
possible force that will keep the tip and sample in contact.
3 During the scan, you may choose to raise the Setpoint to improve
tracking of the topography. Some iteration may be required to reach
the optimal value.
Gains
The I and P gains in the Servo window dictate how quickly the feedback
system reacts to changes in deflection. Typically the I (Integral) and P
(Proportional) gains are set to the same value; the I gain setting has a
much greater effect on imaging than the P gain.
When the gains are set too high, the system will overcompensate to
correct changes in tip deflection which will lead to “ringing” at the
leading and trailing edges of features. When the gains are too low, the
system will not adjust the tip quickly enough for that scan speed,
blurring the topography.
Gain settings of 5-10 % are typical, though some iteration will most
often be required to optimize the gains for a particular sample.
Scan Settings
In the Scan and Motor window, the scan Speed and Resolution (X) will
all affect image quality.
A faster scan speed decreases imaging time but may not allow the
system sufficient time to accurately track the topography. A typical scan
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speed will be 2-5 lines/second for smooth surfaces. For rougher surfaces
a lower scan speed may be needed.
A typical resolution of 256 pixels/line provides good resolution and
speed. Increasing the resolution will improve image quality but will
require longer imaging times.
One good option is to scan a large region at low resolution and high
speed, and then to zoom in on a region of interest for a high resolution
scan at lower speed. After completing the large scan, use the Offset and
Size values in the Scan and Motor window to adjust the scan to cover
the region of interest. Increase the Resolution, decrease the Speed, and
re-scan the zoomed region.
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AC Modes
Acoustic AC Mode (AAC) 104
AAC Mode 104
Constant Height Mode 109
Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode 110
Standard MAC Mode 111
Top MAC Mode 112
Q Control 112
In AC Mode, introduced in “Intermittent Contact AFM" on page 24, a
sinusoidal voltage is applied to a piezo element or magnetic coil in the
nose assembly or sample plate. The piezo or magnetic coil causes the
probe tip to oscillate, typically at or near one of its resonance
frequencies, such that it taps gently on the surface. The tip is then
raster-scanned over the region of interest while the amplitude of
oscillation is monitored to produce images. Through this method, lateral
forces on the tip are virtually eliminated, enabling higher resolution
imaging than is possible with Contact Mode.
NOTE
This chapter references material in Chapter 4 and Chapter 5. Be sure to
review and understand Chapter 5 before continuing with AC Mode.
The process for imaging in AC Mode is similar to that of Contact Mode,
with one additional step: the cantilever must be tuned to near its
resonance frequency.
There are two methods for providing the oscillation: Acoustic (AAC)
and Magnetic (MAC). Both AAC and MAC Modes require the
additional MAC Mode or MAC III controller. The MAC controllers
utilize “lock-in amplifier” technology to precisely determine the
oscillation amplitude and phase response of the cantilever, resulting in
excellent force regulation and high-quality phase images.
To use a MAC controller, choose Controls > Setup > Options
and verify that the Serial Port AC Mode Controller check box is
selected.
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Acoustic AC Mode (AAC)
In Acoustic AC (AAC) Mode AFM, a piezo-electric transducer in the
nose assembly drives the cantilever oscillation. Note that the nose
assembly (Figure 71) includes two contact pins through which the drive
signal is routed to the transducer. AAC Mode probe cantilevers have
resonance frequencies typically in the 100-300 kHz range. Any sample
plate can be used.
Figure 71 AAC Mode nose assembly
AAC Mode
1 To image in AAC Mode, first follow the steps from Chapter 4:
a Insert the nose assembly into the scanner.
b Insert a probe into the nose assembly.
c
Place the scanner in the microscope base.
d Align the laser on the cantilever.
e
Insert and align the detector.
f
Prepare the sample and place it on the sample plate.
g Adjust the video system to focus on the cantilever.
2 Use the manual screws for coarse approach.
3 Use the Close switch on the HEB for a final approach to bring the tip
close to, but not touching, the sample.
4 In PicoView choose Mode > ACAFM.
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5 Choose Controls > AC Mode to open the ACAFM Controls
window (Figure 72).
Figure 72 ACAFM Controls window
6 Set the Drive Mechanism to AAC.
7 Set the Drive% to 10 %. This is the amplitude of the AC drive
signal, stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the maximum available
10 V.
8 In the Servo window set the Setpoint to 0 (the Setpoint must be zero
in order to perform an Auto Tune with the HEB as the AC source).
9 Choose Controls > AC Mode Tune to openthe AC Mode Tune
(Figure 73) and AC Tune windows (Figure 74).
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Figure 73 AC Mode Tune window
Figure 74 AC Tune window with resonance peak at ~154.4 kHz
10 The next step is to tune the oscillation signal to match the frequency
of the particular cantilever. You will use the controls in the AC Mode
Tune window to sweep through a range of frequencies. The resultant
plot should show one strong, sharp resonance peak. The cantilever’s
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storage box should indicate the range in which the primary resonance
frequency will be found.
11 In the upper Auto Tune area of the AC Mode Tune window, enter
the Start and End frequencies (in kHz) for the tuning sweep. For a
new or unknown cantilever, use the stated minimum and maximum
frequencies given on the storage box. If you happen to know the
resonance frequency more exactly, you can use a smaller range to
speed the tuning process.
12 Set the Peak Amplitude, the maximum desired amplitude of
cantilever oscillation. 2 volts is a typical starting value.
13 To ensure good engagement of the tip with the sample, set the
oscillation Frequency slightly below the actual resonance frequency
of the cantilever. Enter an Off Peak value to offset the oscillation
frequency from the cantilever’s resonance frequency. A typical
starting value is -0.200 kHz.
14 Click the Auto Tune button. The system will sweep several times
through the range of frequencies, locating the peak oscillation
amplitude within the range (Figure 73). The AC signal oscillation
will be set to this value, taking into account the specified Offset.
15 Focus the cantilever in the video window.
16 Turn the video system focus knob toward you such that the tip goes
just out of focus (the focal plane is just below the tip now).
17 Press the Close switch to raise the sample until both the tip and
sample are in focus (i.e., they are nearly touching).
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Next, bring the tip into contact with the sample. In AAC mode,
“contact” occurs when the cantilever oscillation is dampened to a
specified percentage of the total oscillation.
18 In the Scan and Motor window, click the Motor tab (Figure 75).
Figure 75 Set the Stop At value in the Scan and Motor window
19 Set the Stop At% to specify the percentage of total oscillation that
represents “contact.” For example, if the total oscillation amplitude
(set in step 11) is 2 volts, and the Stop At value is set to 90 %, the
approach will stop when the oscillation is damped to 1.8 volts.
20 Click the Approach button in PicoView’s toolbar
. The
system will raise the sample until the amplitude is damped to the
Stop At percentage. Because of air damping, oscillation typically
decreases as the tip nears the sample. The software monitors the rate
of change of amplitude as well as the absolute value, so the final
amplitude will not be exactly the Stop At percentage.
21 In the Servo window set the I Gain and P Gain to 5 %. These gains
dictate how quickly the system will react to changes in amplitude.
22 In the Scan and Motor window, select the Scan tab.
23 Enter a scan Speed of 1-2 ln/s and a Resolution of 256. More
information on fine tuning these settings can be found in Chapter 5.
24 Enter the Size (in microns) and X Offset and/or Y Offset values to
set the size and center of the scan. You can also click and drag the
Scan box in the graph on the Scan and Motor window to adjust the
scan size and location.
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25 In the Realtime Images window, make sure that Topography and
Deflection are displayed.
26 In the Scan and Motor window, click the Down blue arrow to
initiate a scan starting at the top of the grid. Click the Up blue arrow
to initiate the scan from the bottom up. The image maps will begin to
be rendered in the Realtime images window.
As the tip moves across the first scan line, the system will adjust the
voltage on the z-piezo to maintain constant amplitude (as specified by
the Setpoint voltage).
For each pixel, the system will record and plot the error signal (the
amount the oscillation amplitude would deviate from the Setpoint
voltage as the Amplitude Image (in volts).
The correction signal (the voltage that the system applies to the z piezo
to maintain the amplitude) is scaled by the system sensitivity and plotted
as topography (in nanometers).
At the end of each scan line the system will “retrace” the line to the
beginning of the scan. The scanner will advance one line width (based
on the resolution setting) and another line will be scanned.
Depending on the Frames setting in the Scan and Motor window, the
system will either scan once and stop, or it will scan infinitely,
overwriting the last scan each time. You can also specify a specific
number of scans to complete.
To stop the scan cycle, click the red STOP circle that will replace the Up
or Down arrow when you start a scan.
Constant Height Mode
AC Mode imaging can be completed using either Constant Amplitude
mode, as described above, or Constant Height mode. In Constant Height
mode the tip remains in the same horizontal plane throughout the scan
(it does oscillate, but the center of that oscillation stays in plane). The
servo gains are set very low so that the system effectively does not react
to changes in amplitude.
Constant Height Mode should only be used for very flat samples. To
image in Constant Height mode, in the Servo window set the I and P
gains to 0.1 %. This system will only very slowly adjust the z-piezo in
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response to amplitude changes. This lack of feedback reduces signal
noise, enabling high resolution imaging of very flat samples.
The change in amplitude as the tip scans across the sample is mapped as
Amplitude and displayed in volts in the Image buffer.
Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode
In Magnetic AC (MAC) Mode AFM, a cantilever coated in magnetic
material is driven by a coil-generated oscillating magnetic field. The
Lock-in in the MAC controller precisely determines and maintains
oscillation amplitude and phase relation changes.
In AAC Mode, the oscillator in the nose assembly oscillates the entire
system, including liquid if imaging in liquid. In MAC mode, because
the oscillation is driven by a magnetic field, only the
magnetically-coated tip oscillates, providing a sharper resonance peak,
and therefore higher resolution imaging. MAC Mode is the most
accurate AC technique available, particularly for imaging in liquids.
MAC Mode requires either a MAC or MAC III controller, both of which
offer the lock-in amplifier required to precisely drive the MAC coil (the
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MAC III offers additional lock-in amplifiers for other more complex
modes as well). Specially coated MAC cantilevers are also required.
Standard MAC Mode
In standard MAC Mode, the coil is located in the sample plate
(Figure 76). A Contact Mode or AC Mode nose assembly can be used.
Figure 76 MAC Mode sample plate
The procedure for imaging in MAC Mode is the same as for AC Mode,
with these exceptions:
1 Connect the 6-pin (MAC) end of the EC/MAC Cable (Figure 77) to
the 6-pin connector on the sample plate. Connect the other end of the
cable to the EC/MAC socket on the bottom of the microscope stand.
Figure 77 EC/MAC cable connections
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2 In the ACAFM Controls dialog box, choose MAC as the Drive
Mechanism.
Top MAC Mode
In Top MAC Mode AFM, the driver coil is located in the nose assembly
(Figure 78). This configuration provides better tip response when
imaging thick samples which can lessen the magnetic field oscillating
the tip. Any sample plate can be used for Top MAC imaging.
Figure 78 Top MAC nose assembly
Q Control
An oscillating cantilever in AC mode is influenced by complex
interaction forces between it and the surface. By carefully setting system
parameters the system can be made to operate entirely in the regime of
net-attractive forces, thereby reducing the effect of the probe tip on the
sample. The range in which the parameters have to be adjusted can be
narrow, however, making it difficult to maintain in real operation.
Q Control is a method that reduces damping of the system, increasing
the quality factor of the oscillating cantilever. Enhanced resonance
allows imaging with very low force and high phase sensitivity. The
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well-defined resonant peak in MAC Mode makes the method
particularly effective.
Q Control uses a feedback loop to alter the sharpness of the resonance
peak. It is only available with the MAC III controller, and it can be used
with either AC Mode or MAC Mode.
To use Q Control, select the On check box in the ACAFM Controls
window. Set the Drive%, which is the amplitude of the Q Control
feedback signal, stated as a percentage of maximum. Click the Optimize
button to set the optimal Q-Control Phase and Drive values.
Figure 79 Q Control settings in the ACAFM Controls window
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Additional Imaging Modes
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM) 114
Current Sensing AFM (CSAFM) 119
Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM) 123
Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM) 125
Force Modulation Microscopy (FMM) 127
Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM) 130
Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM) 134
One of the primary advantages of the Agilent 5500 SPM is that it allows
you to perform many different imaging modes with the same basic
hardware. Most of the modes presented in this chapter are based on
Contact Mode or AC Mode imaging, so be sure that you have read the
information in Chapter 4, Chapter 5, and Chapter 6 before proceeding
with this chapter.
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM)
In STM, a bias voltage is applied between a sharp, conducting tip and
the sample. When the tip approaches the sample, electrons “tunnel”
through the narrow gap, either from the sample to the tip or vice versa,
depending on the bias voltage. The tunneling current is held constant
throughout the scan. Changes of only 0.1 nm in the separation distance
cause an order of magnitude difference in the tunneling current. The
interaction is between single atoms in the sample and tip, giving STM
remarkably high lateral resolution.
Agilent STM tips are pre-cut or chemically etched lengths of 0.25 mm
OD, 80 % platinum - 20 % iridium wire. If the wire tip is damaged it can
be trimmed and used again. Using tips coated in insulating wax, STM
can also be performed in fluid.
The Agilent multi-purpose scanner, when equipped with an STM nose
assembly (Figure 80), can be used for STM. The nose assembly is
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available with three different preamplifiers for varying sensitivity
(Table 2).
Figure 80 STM nose assembly
Table 2 STM nose assembly and scanner sensitivities
Color
Red
Blue
Green
Sensitivity
10 nA/v
1 nA/V
0.1 nA/V
Bandwidth
20 kHz
6.3 kHz
2 kHz
Test Resistor
10 G
1 G
100 M
A dedicated STM scanner (Figure 81) provides lower current operation
and higher resolution. The scanner is available with three preamplifier
options for varying sensitivity (see Table 2). The color-coded preamp,
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located beneath the tip, can be field-replaced to adjust the sensitivity if
necessary.
Figure 81 STM scanner
The procedure for STM imaging is as follows:
1 If you are using the multi-purpose scanner, insert the nose assembly
into the scanner (see Chapter 4 for details).
2 Insert a tip into the nose assembly or scanner. Grasp the tip with a
tweezers, then insert it into the hollow tube until it protrudes
approximately 2 mm (Figure 82).
Figure 82 Inserting STM tip wire in scanner
3 Place the scanner in the scanner bracket on the microscope.
4 Prepare the sample and place it on a sample plate. The sample must
be electrically isolated from the sample plate. The particular
mounting arrangement will depend on the sample type and size.
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5 Attach an electrode from the sample plate to the sample. Lift the
spring-loaded electrode clip on the sample plate and insert the
electrode under it (Figure 83). Connect the electrode to the sample,
ensuring good contact.
Figure 83 Sample on plate with electrode attached
6 Place the sample plate on the microscope.
7 Plug the 3-pin EC connector of the EC/MAC cable into the 3-pin
socket on the sample plate. Plug the other end of the cable into the
EC/MAC socket on the microscope.
NOTE
The sample plate cable can transfer low levels of vibration to the sample.
During very high resolution imaging this can affect images quality. We
recommend first plugging the sample plate cable to the flexible 3-wire
umbilical included with the sample plate. The umbilical should then be
plugged in to the microscope base. The umbilical’s individual wires tend
to reduce the transfer of vibration.
8 In PicoView, choose Mode > STM.
9 In the Servo window enter the Bias Voltage (Figure 84). Typical
values are 50-200 millivolts (0.05-0.200 V). A positive bias indicates
current flow from the tip to the sample, and vice versa for negative
bias.
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Figure 84 Servo window settings for STM imaging
10 Enter the Setpoint current, in nanoamps, that the system will try to
hold constant during scanning. A typical setting is 1-2 nA.
11 Enter the I and P gains for the z-servo, which will dictate how
quickly the system will adjust to changes in tunneling current.
Typical values are 1-2 % for both gains.
12 In the Realtime Images window choose to display images for
Current and Topography.
13 In the Scan and Motor window set the scan size, speed and offsets.
A scan Speed of 1 ln/s is a good starting value.
14 Using the Close switch on the HEB, raise the sample until the tip is
close to, but not touching, the scanner. The video system is not useful
in STM as the tip is essentially vertical, so view the tip from the side
of the microscope and bring it as close to the sample as you can. Be
certain to not drive the tip into the sample. To be safe you can make
the approach length longer, which will just add a little time to the
approach.
15 Click the Approach button in PicoView’s toolbar. The scanner will
lower until the Setpoint current is reached.
16 For lowest current operation, once engaged reduce the Setpoint value
until the indicator in the Servo window changes from green to red.
Then increase the Setpoint until the indicator in the Servo window
just turns green. For rougher surfaces you may need to increase the
setpoint current slightly more.
17 In the Scan and Motor window click the Up or Down arrows to
begin the scan.
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Current Sensing AFM (CSAFM)
In Current Sensing AFM (CSAFM) an ultra-sharp AFM cantilever,
coated with conducting film, probes the conductivity and topography of
the sample surface. CSAFM requires a special 9 ° nose cone containing
a pre-amp. A bias voltage is applied to the sample while the cantilever is
kept at virtual ground (Figure 85). As in Contact Mode, the tip force is
held constant throughout the scan. The current is used to construct the
Conductivity image.
Figure 85 CSAFM schematic
CSAFM is useful for locating defects in thin films, for molecular
recognition studies, and for resolving electronic and ionic processes
across cell membranes. It has proven useful in joint I/V spectroscopy
and contact force experiments as well as contact potential studies.
CSAFM imaging can be used in an ambient environment or under
temperature or environmental control. However, as surface
contamination (especially a moisture layer on the sample surface) can
reduce the clarity of imaging, it is strongly recommended that CSAFM
be completed in a controlled, low humidity environment.
The Agilent multi-purpose scanner can be used with the CSAFM nose
assembly (Figure 86) for CSAFM imaging. The nose assembly includes
one of three color-coded preamps for varying sensitivity: 10 nA/V (red),
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1 nA/V (blue) or 0.1 nA/V (green). See Table 2 on page 115 for more
details.
Figure 86 CSAFM nose assembly and scanner
Platinum-coated, conductive tips are required for CSAFM imaging.
Because an electrode must be attached to the sample, a sample plate is
also required.
To image in CSAFM Mode:
1 Begin with the steps you learned in Chapter 4:
a Insert the nose assembly into the scanner.
b Load a probe into the nose assembly.
c
Place the scanner in the microscope base and connect its cables.
d Align the laser on the cantilever.
e
Insert and align the detector.
2 Prepare the sample and place it on a sample plate. The sample must
be electrically isolated from the sample plate. The particular
mounting arrangement will depend on the sample type and size.
3 Attach an electrode from the sample plate to the sample. A length of
copper wire works well as the electrode. Lift the spring-loaded
electrode clip on the sample plate and insert the electrode under it
(Figure 83 on page 117). Connect the electrode to the sample. Check
the continuity between the working electrode contact and sample to
ensure that a proper connection is achieved.
4 Place the sample plate on the microscope.
5 Plug the 3-pin EC connector of the EC/MAC cable into the 3-pin
socket on the sample plate. Plug the other end of the cable into the
EC/MAC socket on the microscope.
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The sample plate cable can transfer low levels of vibration to the sample.
During very high resolution imaging this can affect resolution. We
recommend first plugging the sample plate cable to the 3-wire umbilical
included with the sample plate. The umbilical should then be plugged in
to the microscope base. The umbilical’s individual wires tend to reduce
the transfer of vibration.
6 In PicoView, choose Mode > CSAFM.
7 In the Servo window enter the Bias Voltage. Typical values are
50-200 millivolts (0.05-0.200 V).
8 Using a voltmeter, check the potential between the working electrode
contact and ground (the exposed metal of the DB44 connector on the
microscope is a good ground point). The bias should be the same as
that entered in the Servo window. If it is not, you may need to adjust
the controller calibration (see the PicoView software user guide for
additional information).
9 Enter a Setpoint value that is slightly more positive than the current
Deflection reading (on the HEB front panel or PicoView’s Laser
Alignment window).
10 Enter the I and P gains for the z-servo, which will dictate how
quickly the system will adjust to changes in tip deflection. A typical
starting value is 10 % for both gains.
11 In the Realtime Images window choose to display images for
CSAFM/Aux BNC, Deflection and Topography.
12 In the Scan and Motor window’s Scan tab, enter:
a Scan Speed of 1-2 ln/s.
b Resolution of 256.
c
Scan Size (in microns).
d X Offset and/or Y Offset values to set the location of the scan
center.
13 Press the Close switch on the HEB to raise the sample until the tip is
close to, but not touching, the sample.
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14 Watching the video system, bring the tip and sample very close to
contact:
a Adjust the focus and location of the video such that the tip is in
sharp focus.
b Lower the focal plane just slightly below the tip by turning the
Focus control toward you until the tip is slightly out of focus.
c
CAUTION
Now, using the Close switch on the HEB, raise the sample until
the sample comes nearly into focus. The tip should now be just
above the sample surface.
Raise the sample slowly and carefully to avoid collision with the sample.
Hard contact between the tip and the sample can damage either or both.
15 Click the Approach button in PicoView’s toolbar. The scanner will
be lowered until the Setpoint deflection voltage is reached.
16 In the Servo window, make the Setpoint more negative until the tip
leaves contact with the sample—the indicator in the Servo window
will change from green to red. Raise the Setpoint again until the
Servo window indicator just turns green.
17 In the Scan and Motor window click the Up or Down arrows to
begin the scan.
During the scan, the system will maintain a constant force on the tip,
and Deflection and Topography will be imaged as in Contact Mode. The
tip itself will remain at virtual ground as the bias is applied to the
sample. The current signal will be positive when the sample surface is
biased negatively. The CSAFM image will show highly conductive
regions as “high” features.
The amplitude of the current signal is strongly dependent upon the
condition of the cantilever tip and sample surface, as well as the force
applied to the surface. Using known good tips, a controlled environment
and low tip force will improve imaging.
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Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM)
Lateral Force Microscopy is a derivative of Contact Mode. During a
typical scan, the cantilever twists in the scan direction as well as
deflecting in the vertical axis. The detector senses change in the
cantilever‘s twisting motion and outputs it as the lateral deflection
(Friction) signal.
Changes in lateral force on the tip can be caused either by changes in
frictional properties across the sample or by variations in topography.
The Friction signal will therefore be a convolution of these two
components. To differentiate friction from topography, two LFM
images are typically captured side-by-side. One image is constructed
from the Friction signal during each trace of the raster scan, and the
other from the Friction signal during retrace. One image can then be
inverted and subtracted from the other to reduce the topographic
artifacts, leaving primarily the effects of friction.
To image in LFM Mode, follow the procedure for Contact Mode given
in Chapter 5. In the Realtime Images window, choose to display two
Friction images, selecting Trace for one and Retrace for the other
(Figure 87).
Figure 87 Display Trace and Retrace Friction images
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NOTE
It is important in LFM that the LFM signal on the Head Electronics Box be
carefully set as close to zero as possible.
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Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM)
In Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy (DLFM), a lead zirconate titanate
(PZT) ceramic element in the nose cone oscillates the tip parallel to the
sample surface, in the direction of the scan (as opposed to perpendicular
oscillation as in AC Mode). Cantilever deflection is mapped to give
topography, as in contact mode. Changes in the amplitude and phase of
the lateral oscillation are imaged. DLFM is very sensitive to changes in
surface properties such as friction and adhesion, and as such it is
particularly useful for polymer studies.
DLFM requires a DLFM nose assembly and any sample plate. Force
Modulation cantilevers are recommended, with a resonance frequency
in the 70-80 kHz range. Some experimentation with stiffer or softer
probes may be required to achieve satisfactory imaging. A MAC Mode
or MAC III controller is also required to drive the lateral oscillation.
CAUTION
Electrical elements of the DLFM nose assembly are exposed. Therefore,
DLFM should never be performed in liquid.
With the MAC Mode controller the following cables must be added:
• Connect a BNC cable from the Phase output of the MAC Mode
controller to the Aux In of AFM Controller.
• Connect a BNC cable from the Amplitude output of the MAC Mode
controller to the Aux BNC on the Head Electronics Box.
For the MAC III controller these connections are made in software.
To image in DLFM Mode:
1 Begin with the steps you learned in Chapter 4:
a Insert the nose assembly into the scanner.
b Load a probe into the nose assembly.
c
Place the scanner in the microscope base and connect its cables.
d Align the laser on the cantilever.
e
Insert and align the detector.
2 In PicoView choose Mode > DLFM.
3 Choose Controls > AC Mode to open the ACAFM Controls
window.
4 Set the Drive Mechanism to AAC.
5 Set the Drive% to 10 %.
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6 Bring the tip close to the sample:
a Press the Close switch on the HEB to raise the sample until the
tip is close to, but not touching, the sample.
b Focus the cantilever in the video window.
c
Turn the video system focus knob toward you such that the tip
goes just out of focus.
d Press the Close switch to raise the sample until both the tip and
sample are in focus (i.e., they are nearly touching).
7 In the Servo window, enter a Setpoint value slightly more positive
than the current Deflection reading. This sets the force on the tip that
will represent “contact” both during approach and during the scan.
8 Click the Approach button in PicoView’s toolbar. The system will
raise the sample until the deflection reaches the Stop At value.
9 After approach, a scan may be performed to check for a region of
interest and to optimize the scanning parameters. When the area of
interest has been located, stop the scan.
10 Set the oscillation frequency for the cantilever:
a Choose Controls > Advanced > AC Mode. Select Friction as
the Input. This will cause the lateral signal from the detector to be
used for tuning the resonance of the cantilever, rather than the
deflection signal.
b Choose Controls > AC Mode Tune to open the AC Mode Tune
window.
c
In the Manual Tune (bottom section) of the window, enter
appropriate Start (kHz) and End (kHz) frequencies. The
frequency range should encompass the possible resonance
frequency of the cantilever. The frequencies are generally in the
20-50 kHz range.
d Click the Manual Tune button.
•The system will perform a single frequency sweep from the Start
to the End frequency.
•Note that the frequency can be selected by moving the vertical
dashed bar in the frequency plot.
e
Experimentation will probably be required to determine the best
frequency for each tip and sample combination but a good
starting point is a frequency that produces the largest deflection.
11 In the Servo window set the I Gain and P Gain to 5 %.
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12 In the Scan and Motor window’s Scan tab, enter:
a Scan Speed of 1-2 ln/s.
b Resolution of 256.
c
Scan Size (in microns).
d X Offset and/or Y Offset values to set the center of the scan.
13 In the Realtime Images window, choose to display Topography,
CSAFM/BNC Aux (Amplitude) and PicoPlus Aux (Phase). If using
a MAC III controller select Aux 1 and Aux 2.
14 In the Scan and Motor window, click the Up blue arrow to initiate a
scan starting at the bottom of the grid. Click the Down blue arrow to
initiate the scan from the top down. The image maps will begin to be
rendered in the Realtime images window.
Force Modulation Microscopy (FMM)
Force Modulation is another derivative of Contact Mode, with
similarities to AC Mode as well. In FM Mode, an additional 20-50 kHz
oscillation is applied to the cantilever. The amplitude and phase of
oscillation will change depending upon the modulus of the surface at
any given point.
The multi-purpose scanner and AAC nose assembly are used for FM
Mode. A specific Force Modulation cantilever is available through
Agilent; however, the best choice of cantilever is often experimentally
determined. A MAC Mode or MAC III controller is also required.
With the MAC Mode controller the following cables must be added:
• Connect a BNC cable from the Phase output of the MAC Mode
controller to the Aux In of AFM Controller.
• Connect a BNC cable from the Amplitude output of the MAC Mode
controller to the Aux BNC on the Head Electronics Box.
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For the MAC III controller these connections are made in software.
To image in Force Modulation Mode:
1 First follow the steps from Chapter 4
a Insert the nose assembly into the scanner.
b Insert a probe into the nose assembly.
c
Place the scanner in the microscope base.
d Align the laser on the cantilever.
e
Insert and align the detector.
f
Prepare the sample and place it on the sample plate.
g Plug the 6-pin MAC connector of the EC/MAC Cable into the
6-pin socket on the sample plate. Plug the other end of the cable
into the EC/MAC socket on the microscope .
h Adjust the video system to focus on the cantilever.
2 Choose Controls > Setup > Options, then select the Serial Port AC
Mode Controller check box. The system will now use the signal
from the MAC (or MAC III) controller.
3 In PicoView choose Mode > Contact. Or, if you are using a MAC
III controller Choose Mode > Force Modulation.
4 Press the Close switch on the HEB to raise the sample until the tip is
close to, but not touching, the sample.
5 Use the video system to bring the tip and sample close to contact:
a Bring the cantilever into sharp focus.
b Lower the focal plane just slightly below the tip by turning the
Focus control toward you until the tip is slightly out of focus.
c
Using the Close switch on the HEB, raise the sample until the
sample and tip both come nearly into focus. The tip should now
be just above the sample surface.
6 Locate the area of interest on the sample by performing a scan.
7 In PicoView’s Servo window, enter a Setpoint value slightly greater
than the current Deflection reading (from the HEB front panel or
PicoView’s Laser Alignment window).
8 Click the Approach button. The system will raise the sample until
the deflection reaches the Setpoint value.
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9 Now set up the additional AC oscillation:
a Choose Controls > AC Mode to open the ACAFM Controls
window.
b Set the Drive Mechanism to AAC.
c
Set the Drive% to 10 %.
d Set the Frequency to 20-50 kHz.
10 In the Servo window set the I Gain and P Gain to 5 %.
11 In the Scan and Motor window’s Scan tab, enter:
a scan Speed of 1-2 ln/s.
b Resolution of 256.
c
scan Size (in microns).
d X Offset and/or Y Offset values to set the center of the scan.
12 In the Realtime Images window, display three images for
Topography, CSAFM/Aux BNC (the Phase signal via the MAC
controller), and PicoPlus Aux (the Amplitude signal via the HEB). If
using a MAC III controller select Aux 1 and Aux 2.
13 In the Scan and Motor window, click the Up or Down blue arrows
to initiate a scan.
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Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM)
Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM) is a qualitative method for
examining changes in the intrinsic or applied electrostatic field of a
sample surface. EFM is a derivative of AAC Mode, using a conductive
tip. A bias voltage is applied to the sample, allowing local static charge
domains and charge carrier density to be measured. EFM has proven
useful for examining fuel cells, solar cells, and for troubleshooting
semiconductor circuits to locate leaks and shorts.
EFM Mode requires a MAC III controller to provide the drive signals.
Lock-in 1 is used to drive the cantilever. The input to Lock-in 1 is the
amplitude of the cantilever deflection at a specific frequency. Lock-in 2
operates at a different frequency, providing the AC bias, also with the
Deflection channel as its input.
An AC nose assembly and any sample plate with an electrode
connection are required. Conductive EFM tips with a resonance of
approximately 60 kHz are required.
The phase of the Lock-in 2 signal changes in response to changes in the
electric field as the tip passes over the surface. The real component of
the phase (X Component 2) and the total phase can both be mapped. A
standard topography image can be collected at the same time. The two
images can then be displayed side-by-side to highlight correlation
between the electrostatic response and topography.
1 To image in EFM Mode, first follow the steps from Chapter 4:
a Insert the nose assembly into the scanner.
b Insert a probe into the nose assembly.
c
Place the scanner in the microscope base.
d Align the laser on the cantilever.
e
Insert and align the detector.
2 Prepare the sample and place it on a sample plate. The sample must
be electrically isolated from the sample plate.
3 Attach a conductor (typically a stiff wire) from the working electrode
to the sample. Lift the spring-loaded electrode clip on the sample
plate and insert the conductor under it. Connect the conductor to the
sample. Check the continuity between the working electrode contact
and sample to ensure a good connection.
4 Plug the 3-pin EC connector of the EC/MAC cable into the 3-pin
socket on the sample plate. Plug the other end of the cable into the
EC/MAC socket on the microscope.
5 Choose Mode > EFM.
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6 Choose Controls > Advanced > AC Mode. The EFM Controls
window will open (Figure 88).
Figure 88 EFM Controls window
7 In the Main tab, set up the Lock-in 1 AC signal which drives the
cantilever oscillation:
a Set the Drive% to 10 %.
b Set the Gain to x1 (the amplitude times 1).
8 Choose Controls > AC Mode Tune to open the AC Mode Tune
window.
9 Tune the drive signal to the resonance frequency of the cantilever:
a In the AC Mode Tune window, enter the Start and End
frequencies (in kHz) for the tuning sweep, typically 20-120 kHz.
b Set the Peak Amplitude to 2.5 volts.
c
Enter an Off Peak value to offset the oscillation frequency from
the cantilever’s resonance frequency. A typical value is
-0.100 kHz.
d Click the Auto Tune button. The system will sweep through the
range of frequencies, locating the peak oscillation amplitude
within the range. The AC signal oscillation will be set to this
value plus the specified Offset.
NOTE
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10 Bring the tip close to contact with the sample:
a Press the Close switch on the HEB to raise the sample until the
tip is close to, but not touching, the sample.
b Focus the cantilever in the video window.
c
Turn the video system focus knob toward you such that the tip
goes just out of focus (the focal plane is just below the tip now).
d Press the Close switch to raise the sample until both the tip and
sample are in focus (i.e., they are nearly touching).
11 Now initiate an approach:
a In the Scan and Motor window, click the Motor tab.
b Set the Stop At (%) to specify the percentage of total oscillation
that represents “contact,” typically 90-95 %.
c
Click the Approach button in PicoView’s toolbar. The system
will raise the sample until the amplitude is damped to the Stop At
percentage.
12 On the EFM tab you will now set up the MAC III controller’s
second lock-in to provide the AC bias. Use the AC Tune window to
verify that this signal is at a frequency that does not add unwanted tip
responses.
a In the Servo window note the Setpoint value. Change the
Setpoint to 10 V to move the tip several microns above the
sample.
b In the EFM tab, set the Drive% to 10 %. The Drive % value is
somewhat experimental; a higher value will improve image
contrast but, beyond a point, it will add noise.
c
Enter a Frequency that is smaller than, and not an even factor of,
the Lock-in 1 signal (from the Main tab). For example, if the
Lock-in 1 Frequency is 60 kHz choose a frequency other than 30,
15, or 7.5 kHz.
d Set the Gain, which multiplies the output of the lock-in by the
selected factor. Use a larger multiplier to improve signal-to-noise
ratio for a small signal. Ensure that the gain will not result in an
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amplitude exceeding 10 V, beyond which the signal will be
clipped. The default value is x1 (the amplitude times 1).
e
Select the EFM Tune check box.
f
In the AC Mode Tune window, set the Start and End frequencies
for the EFM tune sweep. Use a wide range centered on the
Lock-in 2 frequency.
g Click the Manual Tune button. The system will sweep Lock-in 2
through the range of frequencies, displaying any peak oscillation
amplitude within the range.
h Adjust the Frequency in the EFM tab if it falls close to one of
these peak frequencies.
i
In the Servo window return the Setpoint to its original value.
13 On the EFM tab clear the EFM Tune check box.
14 On the EFM Controls Main tab, click the Zero Phase button to set
the phase at the current frequency to zero, making it easier to
interpret phase changes from the current value.
15 On the EFM tab, click Optimize Phase. This will shift the phase of
the Lock-in 2 signal to maximize the X component of phase.
16 In the Servo window set the I Gain and P Gain to 5 %. These gains
dictate how quickly the system will react to changes in amplitude.
17 In the Scan and Motor window’s Scan tab, enter:
a Scan Speed of 1-2 ln/s.
b Resolution of 256.
c
Scan Size (in microns).
d X Offset and/or Y Offset values to set the center of the scan.
18 In the Realtime Images window, choose to display Topography
and Aux 1 (the X component of the phase signal which will be
mapped to make the EFM image).
19 In the Scan and Motor window, click the Up or Down blue arrow to
initiate a scan. The Aux 1 map will show changes in the electrostatic
force as they differ from the force at the touch-down location.
20 Adjust the Gain, Scan Speed, Resolution, etc., to optimize the
topography image.
For more on advanced options for EFM Mode see Chapter 11.
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Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM)
Kelvin Force Microscopy (KFM) is similar to EFM. An additional
feedback loop applies a DC bias to the tip to counteract deflection due to
the surface electrostatic force. The output from this feedback loop
provides a quantitative analysis of changes in the applied or intrinsic
electrostatic field of the sample.
As in EFM Mode, KFM requires conductive tips, a sample plate with
electrode connection, an AC nose assembly, and a MAC III controller to
provide the drive signals. Lock-in 1 is used to drive the cantilever.
Lock-in 2 provides an AC bias. The MAC III internal servo drive
provides the DC bias to counteract tip deflection.
The procedure for imaging in KFM Mode is the same as that for EFM
Mode, with the additional step of setting up the DC bias servo. This
should be completed after approach:
1 Choose Controls > Advanced > AC Mode, then click the Other tab
(Figure 89).
Figure 89 Advanced AC Controls Other tab
2 Set the I and P gains for the Servo to 1 %.
3 In the Realtime images window choose to display images for
Topography, Phase and SP (the output from the servo).
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4 Choose Controls > Spectroscopy to open the Spectroscopy
window (Figure 90).
Figure 90 Use the Spectroscopy window to optimize the Setpoint value
5 Select Amplitude vs Distance at the top of the Main tab.
6 On the Advanced tab set the Aux 1 Input to SP.
7 On the Lock-in 2 tab verify that the From Servo box is not checked.
8 To prevent damage to the tip during the Amplitude vs Distance
cycle, the total motion of the piezo needs to be reduced so that it does
not contact the sample surface. Note the position of the piezo in the
Servo window indicator. Enter a slightly more positive value for the
End parameter in the Spectroscopy window.
9 Click on the blue triangle to begin the piezo movement and observe
the SP response in the Spectroscopy window.
10 In the Advanced AC Mode Controls window’s Other tab, increase
the Setpoint value in small increments until the SP vs Distance plot
is as horizontal as possible. Hold down the Shift and Ctrl keys while
pressing the Up arrow on the keyboard to increment the amount by
0.001. The traces will probably be noisy, but make them as
horizontal as possible. This adjustment has the largest effect on the
output of the SP servo and typically has a value of less than 0.05.
The servo values should now be optimized.
11 Stop the Spectroscopy.
12 On the Lock-in 2 tab select the From Servo check box.
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For more on advanced options for KFM Mode see Chapter 11.
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Scanner Maintenance and Calibration
Care and Handling of the Probes and Scanner 138
Probes 138
Nose Assembly 138
Two-Piece Nose Cone Cleaning 139
Scanner 139
Scanner Characteristics 139
Non-Linearity 140
Sensitivity 140
Other Characteristics 141
Bow 141
Cross Coupling 141
Aging 142
Creep 142
Calibrating the Multi-Purpose Scanner 143
X Calibration 144
X Non-Linearity 145
X Hysteresis 146
X Sensitivity 147
Y Calibration 147
Y Non-Linearity 148
Y Hysteresis 149
Y Sensitivity 150
Z Calibration 151
Sensitivity 151
Servo Gain Multiplier 152
Archive the Calibration Files 152
Agilent scanners are designed for years of consistent, worry-free
operation. However, scanners contain extremely delicate components
and must be treated with care to maintain their high level of operation.
This chapter discusses regular maintenance of the scanner, nose
assemblies and probes, as well as regular calibration procedures for the
multi-purpose, open-loop scanner.
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Care and Handling of the Probes and Scanner
Probes
Always store probes at room temperature in their protective cases.
Handle gently with tweezers, following the only the described
procedures.
If a probe is dropped it may very well be damaged. You can check
whether the cantilever is intact by viewing it through a loupe or other
magnifying device.
If you are using more than one type of probe, be sure to store them
separately in well-marked cases to avoid confusion.
Nose Assembly
Store nose assemblies in a clean, dry location where they will not be
subject to excessive humidity, temperature changes or contact.
The scanner fixture is designed with a socket to safely hold a nose
assembly while you are working with the scanner. This is not a
permanent storage location, but it is a safe way to keep the nose
assembly close at hand.
Dirt, grease or spots on the glass window of the nose assembly can
interfere with the optical path of the laser. Regularly remove the probe
and clean the nose assembly window with cotton or a soft tissue (dry,
wetted with water, or with ethanol).
The glass is glued to the nose assembly with chemically resistive epoxy,
so if the window breaks there is no easy way to replace it and the entire
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nose assembly will likely need to be replaced. Use careful handling to
avoid damaging the window.
Only remove the nose assembly from the scanner using the Nose
Assembly Removal Tool, with the scanner placed upright in its fixture.
Do NOT use the Removal Tool to install the nose assembly in the
scanner.
Two-Piece Nose Cone Cleaning
The two-piece nose cone is not to be used in liquid because it does not
have a glass window to prevent liquid from getting to the scanner. After
it is removed from a scanner, the two-piece nose cone may be cleaned
with a low oxidizing organic solvent such as ethyl alcohol.
Scanner
Between uses, remove the scanner from the microscope and store it, on
its assembly fixture or in its storage case, in a location where it will not
be subject to excessive humidity, temperature changes or contact.
Agilent recommends that scanners be stored in a desiccator.
Use care when moving the scanner on its assembly stand as it is not
secured to the stand and can be damaged if dropped.
The scanner contains very brittle and fragile piezoelectric ceramic
components. Applying excessive lateral force while exchanging nose
assemblies, or dropping the scanner even a short distance onto a hard
surface, will permanently damage the scanner. Use only the procedures
described in Chapter 4 to install and remove the nose assembly.
If the nose assembly housing becomes loose or can be wiggled with the
fingers when in place, contact Agilent support for assistance.
Cracked or broken piezo components will result in abnormal imaging.
Damage to the scanner such as those described above are NOT covered
by the standard warranty.
Scanner Characteristics
The multi-purpose scanner includes several piezoelectric elements for
moving the probe along the X, Y and Z axes. Piezoelectric materials
inherently exhibit non-ideal properties, the effects of which are
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explained below. Though they are explained separately for simplicity,
they may not be independent of each other.
All Agilent scanners are calibrated before shipment and installation. A
unique calibration file is provided with each system, as is a “generic”
calibration file, which is not scanner-specific.
Non-Linearity
Figure 91 shows a calibration target consisting of square features of
known size and equal spacing. The image was made with an
uncalibrated scanner. Features are larger at the start of each scan line,
and also at the bottom of the image. This effect is the result of
non-linearity of the piezo response across the scan range.
Figure 91 Image from an uncalibrated scanner showing non-linearity
Sensitivity
The features in Figure 91 also change size within each scan line. Lateral
feature sizes may be reported incorrectly due to changes in piezo
sensitivity.
Hysteresis
Hysteresis is an effect in which the piezo movement during extension in
one direction does not match the movement during contraction caused
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by an equal and opposite field in the other direction. The effect of
hysteresis is that the trace will be offset from the retrace, as in Figure 92.
Figure 92 Scanner hysteresis before correction. The yellow line is the
Trace image, and the blue is the Retrace.
Other Characteristics
Bow
During raster scanning, the free end of the scanner moves in an arc over
the full range of the scanner, as opposed to a flat line in a plane above
the sample. Bowing is minimized by the “balanced pendulum” design of
the Agilent scanners. Residual bowing is typically accounted for by
“flattening” algorithms in the PicoView software.
Cross Coupling
Cross coupling is the effect in which movement of the scanner along
one axis (usually X or Y) causes unwanted movement along the other
axis (Z). Systems using tube scanners are more susceptible to geometric
cross coupling because a single four-quadrant tube provides motion in
all the three axes. The larger Agilent multi-purpose scanners, with 90
micron X/Y scan range, use separate piezoelectric elements for X/Y
movement and for Z movement. This configuration helps to reduce the
cross coupling between different axes. Smaller range scanners (e.g., 10
micron X/Y scan range) use two sets of plates (one each for X and Y
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movement) and a single tube for Z motion. Since the range is small with
these scanners, the effect of cross-coupling is minimal.
Aging
Aging is a time-dependent effect in which the sensitivity (extension per
unit of field) of the scanner decreases, approximately exponentially,
over time. A large amount of decrease takes place during the first few
hours of use. Therefore, scanners are burned in before initial calibration.
After this initial burn-in, the aging rate is very slow; however,
calibration once or twice per year is still recommended.
Creep
At a constant applied voltage the piezo position will change slightly
over time, most noticeably at the beginning of a scan or after a change
on scan location. Creep appears as elongation of the feature in the
direction of the offset because of this slow movement (Figure 93).
Figure 93 Scanner creep
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Calibrating the Multi-Purpose Scanner
Regular calibration ensures that Agilent multi-purpose scanners will
provide high performance imaging for many years of service. The
following calibration procedure is recommended once or twice per year,
if the system is moved, and before critical measurements.
1 Make sure the correct scanner file is selected under the PicoView
Scanner menu.
2 Place a calibration target on a sample plate and mount the plate on
the microscope.
3 Follow the procedures for Contact Mode measurements to obtain an
image of the calibration target. Use the following settings:
a Deflection = -0.8 to -1.0 V.
b Setpoint voltage = 0.8.
c
Scan Size = 90 microns.
d Resolution = 256.
e
Scan Speed to 1 ln/s.
4 Make sure that the target is positioned such that its features are
aligned in both the X and Y directions. Use the Crosshairs tool in
the Realtime Images window (Controls > Crosshair) as an aid. If
the target is not aligned, withdraw the tip, adjust the target, and
approach again.
5 In the Realtime Images window choose File > Autosave. During
calibration this provides a useful way to review the effects of applied
changes to the calibration file.
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X Calibration
In the Realtime Images window set up two Topography images, one for
Trace and one for Retrace (Figure 94).
Figure 94 Images of calibration target during Trace and Retrace
6 Choose Scanner > Edit to open the Scanner Setup window.
Figure 95 Scanner Setup window
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X Non-Linearity
To check X non-linearity, in the Realtime Images window choose Tools
> Horizontal Cross Section. Use markers to report the dimensions
between sets of features at either end of the scan range (Figure 96).
Figure 96 Horizontal cross-section tool used to check non-linearity. Two
sets of cursors are shown.
If the spacing is not identical for the two sets of features, adjust the X
Non-linearity term in the Scanner Setup window, according to the
following equation:
StartSize  CurrentTerm
NewTerm = ----------------------------------------------------------------EndSize
where
StartSize = size of features at the start of the scan
EndSize = size of features at the end of the scan
CurrentTerm = current non-linear correction term.
You can also use the diagram in Figure 97 as a guide.
Figure 97 Correction diagram for X non-linearity
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After updating, re-scan the calibration target. The spacing between
features should be approximately the same across the scan range.
X Hysteresis
Place a vertical cursor at the same location in the Trace and Retrace
images. The cursor should cross the same features in both images. If this
is not the case, as in Figure 98, increase the X Hysteresis value and
re-scan. Alignment should be consistent across the full range of the
x-axis. Several iterations may be necessary to align all edges in the trace
and retrace images.
Figure 98 Misalignment between trace and retrace
Figure 99 Features align properly after X Hysteresis adjustment
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X Sensitivity
Using the Cross-section tool, measure the length of a set of features
across the scan (Figure 100).
Figure 100 Cross-section of several features to check Xsensitivity
If the measured dimension does not match the actual, then adjust the X
Sensitivity term according to the following equation:
CurrentSensitivity  Kno wnSize
NewSensitivity = ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------MeasuredSize
After adjustment the measured size should be within 5 % of the actual
size.
Y Calibration
The methods used for calibrating the scanner’s Y axis are similar to
those used for the X dimension. The exception is that the scan range will
be set to ½ of the scanner’s full range. The Y axis is generally used as
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the slow scanning axis so the range will be reduced as a time
consideration.
Only one Topography image is required for Y calibration. The other
image can be assigned to display flattened Topography data.
Y Non-Linearity
Obtain an image of the calibration target. Using the Cross-section tool,
set markers at the uppermost and bottommost feature along a vertical
cross section (Figure 101).
Figure 101 Cross-section in Y direction showing non-linearity
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If the dimensions are not identical for the two features, adjust the Y
Non-linearity term according to the equation:
StartSize  CurrentTerm
NewTerm = ----------------------------------------------------------------EndSize
where
StartSize = size of features at the start of the scan
EndSize = size of features at the end of the scan
CurrentTerm = current non-linear correction term.
Use the diagram in Figure 102 as a guide for making the correction.
Figure 102 Correction diagram for Y Non-linearity
Y Hysteresis
The next step will be to adjust the Y Hysteresis term. Assign one data
channel to display a single frame of the calibration target and place a
vertical cross-section through a line of features. Allow the scanner to
scan continuously, which will update the cross section plot each pass
through the frame.
Figure 103 shows the upward scan (blue marker) and downward re-trace
(red marker) data. The markers are used to measure the difference in the
acquired data at a given point on the Y axis. The blue marker was placed
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on the edge of a feature while the scan was moving upwards. The red
marker was placed on the same feature during the downward scan.
Figure 103 Markers indicating trace and re-trace Y hysteresis
While scanning in one direction, focus on one step of the grating. As the
scan data is plotted position a marker on this edge. Wait for the scan in
the opposite direction to occur and position a second marker on the
same edge after the plot has been updated. In the example below, about
2 microns of hysteresis can be measured using this method.
After increasing or decreasing the Y Hysteresis term, alignment of the
individual edges should be confirmed across the full range of the Y axis.
It may be necessary to update the hysteresis term more than once before
all edges become aligned in both the upward and downward scans.
Y Sensitivity
Using the Vertical Cross-section tool, measure the top-to-bottom
distance of a set of features across the scan (Figure 104).
Figure 104 Cross-section of several features to check Y sensitivity
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If the measured dimension does not match the actual, the adjust the Y
Sensitivity term according to the following equation:
CurrentSensitivity  Kno wnSize
NewSensitivity = ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------MeasuredSize
Z Calibration
Sensitivity
After the X and Y dimensions have been calibrated, obtain an image of a
Z calibration standard and render the data as Tilted. Zoom in on a single
pit to minimize distortion. Position the cross section tool over a Z
feature. Place markers at the top and bottom of the feature. Measure the
step size.
Figure 105 Cross-section checking feature height for Z sensitivity
It is important to correctly position the markers for the Z feature
measurement. Place them in the center of the scan range. It may also be
necessary to decrease the Integral (I) gain in the Servo window until the
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top and the bottom of the data plot is flat before making the
measurement.
If the step size is not within 5 % of the actual value, calculate a new Z
sensitivity term using the following equation:
CurrentSensitivity  Kno wnSize
NewSensitivity = ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------MeasuredSize
After the X, Y and Z calibration steps have been completed, the scanner
is fully calibrated. The remainder of this procedure will help to create
and finalize the required calibration software files.
Servo Gain Multiplier
If you were to image a standard sample and view the topography or
error signal on an oscilloscope while increasing the gains, you would
see that, up to a point, the signal would be relatively smooth as the
system accurately tracked the sample surface. At some gain level,
however, the oscilloscope image will begin to display small, high
frequency oscillations. This is similar to feedback in a microphone, with
the gains so high that each oscillation is multiplied and fed back into the
signal.
The Servo Gain Multiplier is a factor that sets the point at which this
“feedback” will occur for a typical signal. Following a successful X, Y
and Z calibration, the Servo Gain Multiplier must be set for each
individual scanner. Enter the value in the Scanner Setup window.
Experimentally it has been shown that an integral gain setting between
15 and 20 works well for most scanners.
Archive the Calibration Files
Copy the newly created calibration files to a disk for archive. Label the
file with the scanner model, serial number and calibration date.
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Closed-Loop Scanners
Scanner Types 153
Z-Axis Closed-Loop Scanner 153
X/Y/Z Closed-Loop Scanner 154
Calibration 154
X and Y Sensor Calibration 154
Z Sensor Calibration 158
In an open-loop scanner, a voltage is applied to the piezo actuators in
extremely precise increments to move the probe accurately in all three
axes. Nevertheless, inherent material properties of the piezo ceramics,
such as hysteresis, creep, and aging may cause the piezoes to drift from
these expected positions.
Agilent closed-loop scanners include high-precision, inductive
positioning sensors to measure, compare, and correct the actual scanner
position to the expected position. Closed-loop scanning improves scan
linearity, provides more accurate probe positioning, and overcomes the
effects of creep, hysteresis, etc.
Scanner Types
Two types of closed-loop scanners are available for the Agilent 5500
SPM: Z-axis closed-loop, and X/Y/Z closed-loop.
Z-Axis Closed-Loop Scanner
The Z-axis closed-loop scanner provides exceptional z-axis positioning
for very linear vertical positioning. Z-axis closed-loop is useful and
more accurate when generating force curves as the sensor eliminates
hysteresis and controls the piezo position to a much higher degree.
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Positional drift that may be present in an open-loop system is
continuously corrected with the closed-loop sensor.
In the Spectroscopy window you can select the Sensor as Topo check
box to use the Z sensor signal instead of the Deflection signal for
generating topography images.
Checking Z Position in the Spectroscopy window will precisely
maintain the cantilever at a defined height above the sample for
specialized experiments, such as measuring how long molecules stretch
and relax.
X/Y/Z Closed-Loop Scanner
The X/Y/Z closed-loop scanner includes the functionality of the Z-Axis
scanner described above, with additional encoders on the X and Y axes.
These sensors allow for very linear scans and also make it easy to move
to precise locations on the sample.
Calibration
Agilent recommends calibrating the Gains, Offset and Sensitivity prior
to each use of the closed-loop scanner. Begin by calibrating the scanner
following the open-loop instructions in the Chapter 8, “Scanner
Maintenance and Calibration.”
For a Z-axis scanner, skip to “Z Sensor Calibration" on page 158 below.
X and Y Sensor Calibration
Initial calibration of the X and Y sensors consists of matching the ±10 V
output range of the sensors with the actual piezo travel, which varies
from scanner to scanner. No sample is required for this procedure.
1 Load a cantilever and set up the 5500 SPM for Contact Mode
imaging.
2 Verify that the correct scanner calibration file is selected in the
Scanner menu.
3 Choose Scanner >Edit to open the Scanner Setup window
(Figure 106).
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Figure 106 Scanner Setup window
4 The values shown in Figure 106 for the X, Y and Z Sensor Offset
and Gain are typical and represent a good starting point for the
calibration process.
a Type in the values, and ensure that the Enabled boxes are all
checked.
b Ensure that the Reversed Gain boxes are checked for X and Z
Sensors.
c
Note that the scanner values will be different for each scanner.
5 In the Scan and Motor window’s Advanced tab, verify that
Enabled Closed Loop is not selected.
6 Enable the high voltage by performing a false engagement:
a In the Servo window enter a Setpoint value more negative than
the Deflection value displayed on the Head Electronics Box.
b Click the Approach button.
c
Reduce the Z piezo Range to 0.000.
d Click the Center button. This avoids the possibility that the piezo
will become depolarized by being fully retracted (which is where
it would be after the false engagement) for an extended period of
time.
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7 In the Scan and Motor window enter:
a A very large number (e.g., 9999) for the Scan Size. It will adjust
automatically to the maximum allowed value.
b Speed of 1-2 lines/second.
c
Resolution of 256.
8 In the Realtime Images window set up two images with the
following settings:
• Input set to X Sensor.
• Flattening set to No Flattening.
• Display Range set to 20.000.
• Offset set to 0.000.
• For one image display Trace and for the other display Retrace.
9 Select Tools > Realtime Cross Section so the individual scan lines
will be displayed in the Cross Section window.
10 Click the Up or Down blue arrows in the Scan and Motor window
to initiate a scan.When the scan is first started, the graph will
probably look similar to that in Figure 107.
Figure 107 Initial plot before closed-loop scanner calibration
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11 Adjust the X Sensor values:
a If the line slopes down from the upper left part of the graph,
select the Reversed check box in the X Sensor area of the
Scanner Setup window.
b Adjust the Offset to shift the line up or down until the left end is
close to -10 V.
c
Adjust the X Sensor Gain to adjust the slope until the right end
of the line is close to +10 V.
The graph should now appear as in Figure 108.
Figure 108 Cross-section after Offset and Gain values optimized
12 Change the scan angle to 90 degrees and repeat step 11 for the Y
Sensor.
13 In the Scan and Motor window’s Advanced tab select the Enable
Closed Loop check box. The scanner will now function in
closed-loop mode.
14 Place a calibration grating on the standard sample plate and mount
the plate on the microscope.
15 Align the grating in both the X and Y axes.
16 Perform all the Contact Mode imaging steps described in Chapter 5
to achieve a good image of the grating.
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17 Adjust the Sensitivity of the X sensor:
a In the Realtime Images window choose Tools > Horizontal
Cross Section. Place the cross-section tool across a set of
features.
b Set markers in the cross section window to measure the
dimension across several features of known width.
c
Use the equation below to adjust the Sensitivity value:
CurrentSensitivity  Kno wnSize
NewSensitivity = ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------MeasuredSize
d Image the features again and verify that the measured width
matches the actual width.
18 Repeat the step above with the Vertical Cross Section tool to set the
Sensitivity of the Y sensor.
Z Sensor Calibration
To calibrate the Z sensor, the output of the sensor will be plotted while
the piezo is being moved through its entire range. Since only the motion
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of the Z piezo is being measured, adjusting the Z Sensor Gain and Offset
should be done without a sample in place.
1 In the Servo window verify that the Z Range of the piezo is set to its
maximum value.
2 Choose Controls > Spectroscopy to open the Spectroscopy
window (Figure 109).
Figure 109 Spectroscopy window Main tab
3 In the Spectroscopy window:
a Maximize the Z piezo motion: in the rectangle below the Link
box, click and drag the left and right edges of the red bar to
completely fill the box.
b On the Advanced tab, verify that the Sensor As Topo box is
checked and the Aux1 Input is set to Topography.
4 Click the  button, then click the blue triangle to start a continuous
sweep of the Z piezo.
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The goal of the calibration procedure is to make the Z Sensor output
appear as in Figure 110:
Figure 110 Target output of the Z sensor following calibration
The plot shows the output of the Z sensor as a function of Z piezo
displacement. The Z sensor output ranges from -10 V to +10 V over the
entire range of the Z piezo.
5 In the Realtime Images window choose Tools > Enter Range. Set
Y Min to -10.0000 and Y Max to 10.0000. The values will adjust to
the maximum allowable range.
6 In the Z Sensor section of the Scanner Setup window adjust the
Offset to change the vertical position of the lines until their left edge
is as close to -10 as possible.
7 Adjust the Gain to change the slope of the lines until they meet in
the upper right corner.
NOTE
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
The Z piezo is highly sensitive to changes in Offset and Gain. To change
these values in smaller increments, click the mouse into the Offset or
Gain box. Hold down Ctrl key while pressing the Up or Down arrows to
change the parameter in 0.01 steps. Hold down the Ctrl and Shift keys
while pressing the Up or Down arrow keys to change the values in 0.001
increments.
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Once the graph looks like Figure 110, the Offset and Gain are properly
set and the Z Sensor is usable over its entire range.
8 To calibrate the Z Sensitivity you will need a step height calibration
standard (the standard calibration grid supplied with your system
will suffice). Its features are 200 nm deep.
a Set up the microscope for Contact Mode imaging.
b Initiate an approach.
c
Obtain a 10 micron image centered on one of the calibration
standard pits (Figure 111):. Flattening should be turned off.
Figure 111 200 nm deep pit on the calibration standard
d In the Realtime Images window use a Horizontal or Vertical
Cross Section tool to gauge a pit of known depth. If the depth
does not match the actual value, calculate a new Sensitivity value
using the following equation:
CurrentSensitivity  Kno wnSize
NewSensitivity = ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------MeasuredSize
e
Enter the new Sensitivity value into the Scanner Setup window.
f
Image the same pit again and check that the depth is now
measured at 200 nm. If not, repeat the previous steps until the
value is measured correctly.
The Z closed loop sensor is now calibrated.
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MAC Mode
List of MAC Mode Components 162
Connections 163
Hardware and Sample Setup 164
The MAC Mode controller provides high precision AC signal control
for AAC and MAC modes. The MAC controller uses a lock-in amplifier
to generate the AC signal. It also provides routing capabilities and
experimental controls for applications requiring additional flexibility in
experiment design.
The MAC Mode controller is used in conjunction with the AFM
Controller and Head Electronics Box (HEB). The main controller
supplies high voltage to the scanner piezoes. The HEB controls the stage
motors and receives information from the photodiode detector. The
MAC controller supplies the drive signal to the nose assembly, as well
as routing signals from additional inputs for advanced setups.
List of MAC Mode Components
The components you receive with MAC Mode may vary slightly
depending on your purchased options:
• MAC Mode controller.
• DB44 cables.
• Power cable.
• RS-232 (serial) cable.
• AAC and/or MAC probes.
• Top MAC option (includes AAC and Top MAC nose assemblies,
standard sample plate, 3-6 pin MAC cable, short DB44 cable) or
MAC option (includes AAC nose assembly, MAC sample plate, 3-6
pin MAC cable, short DB44 cable).
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Please contact Agilent if any of these items are missing.
Connections
The MAC Mode controller is shown in Figure 112. The rear panel is
shown in Figure 113.
Figure 112 Front panel of the MAC Mode controller
Figure 113 MAC Mode controller rear panel
The connectors are as follows:
1 MAC drive output.
2 AAC drive output.
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3 Input summed to AAC drive signal.
4 Deflection output from detector.
5 Amplitude output from lock-in amplifier.
6 Phase shift signal from lock-in amplifier.
7 To Serial Port on computer.
8 Aux output for custom applications.
9 44-pin cable from AFM Controller.
10 44-pin cable to Head Electronics Box.
11 25-pin cable (if applicable).
12 25-pin cable to HEB (if applicable).
In addition to the standard cabling for your microscope, the following
connections must be made to use the MAC Mode in your system (a
complete wiring diagram is included in Appendix A).
Power Cord Connect the power cord from the back of the MAC Mode
controller to building power. Do not power on the controller at this time.
Computer Connection Connect the RS-232 serial cable from the
SERIAL port on the MAC Mode controller to a COM port on your
computer. The port number will be automatically detected if your
computer has more than one COM port.
Head Electronics Box Connection Connect the short DB44 cable
from the MAC Mode Controller to the CONTROLLER connector on
the Head Electronics box (HEB). Use a DB44 cable between the
MICROSCOPE connector on the HEB and the 44-pin connector on the
microscope.
AFM Controller Connection Connect a DB44 cable from the MAC
Mode controller to the PicoSPM II connector on the AFM Controller.
Sample Plate Connection Plug the round jack of the EC/MAC cable
into the underside of the microscope stand, and the 6-pin connector into
the MAC sample plate. When using Acoustic AC Mode, this connection
is not necessary.
Hardware and Sample Setup
Most hardware and sample setup options with MAC Mode are identical
to those for standard AAC and MAC Mode operation, as covered in
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Chapter 6, “AC Modes.” Please refer to Chapter 6 for more on how to
set up the microscope for imaging.
In AAC Mode the drive signal can be provided by either the Head
Electronics Box or the MAC Mode controller. To use the MAC Mode
controller as the AC source, choose Controls > Setup > Options, then
check the Serial Port AC Mode Controller box. The system will now use
the drive signal from the MAC Mode controller, through the HEB to the
microscope.
Upon startup, the software may instruct you to update the system’s
firmware. Follow the on-screen instructions to do so.
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MAC III Mode
Initial Setup 167
List of MAC III Components 167
Connections 168
Hardware and Sample Setup 171
MAC III Software Controls 171
Simplified Software Control Options
Contact Mode 172
AC AFM 172
STM 174
LFM 174
DLFM 174
FMM 175
EFM 177
KFM 180
Advanced Software Control Options
Lock-In Tabs 183
Outputs Tab 185
Other Tab 188
171
182
The MAC III controller adds imaging modes, routing capabilities and
other experimental controls for applications requiring additional
flexibility in experiment design. MAC III works with the Agilent 5500
SPM as either an option or an upgrade. It offers the best control
available for oscillating probe technology, providing, among other
things, far better resolution in fluids than other techniques.
MAC III includes three user-configured lock-in amplifiers for precise
and versatile feedback options as well as additional experimental
flexibility. MAC III adds functionality to many of the imaging modes
described earlier in this manual.
Moreover, MAC III can operate in multiple modes simultaneously. For
example, you can image in AAC and KFM Modes simultaneously,
ensuring that the same scan location and size is achieved in both modes.
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Not only is this arrangement very time efficient, it also ensures that the
data is extremely reliable and easy to compare between modes.
The MAC III controller is used in conjunction with the AFM controller
and Head Electronics Box (HEB). The AFM controller supplies high
voltage to the scanner piezo elements. The HEB controls the stage
motors and receives information from the photo detector. The MAC III
controller supplies the drive signal to the nose assembly, as well as
routing signals from additional inputs for advanced setups.
Initial Setup
List of MAC III Components
The components you receive with Mac III may vary slightly depending
on your purchased options:
• MAC III controller.
• AAC nose assembly.
• DB44 cables.
• Power cable.
• RS-232 (serial) cable.
• MAC and/or AAC probes.
• Top MAC option (includes Top MAC nose assembly and standard
sample plate) or MAC option (includes MAC mode sample plate and
3-6 pin MAC cable).
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Please contact Agilent if any of these items are missing.
Connections
The MAC III controller is shown in Figure 114. The rear panel is shown
in Figure 115.
Figure 114 Front panel of the MAC III Controller.
Figure 115 Rear panel of the MAC III controller
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In addition to the standard cabling for your microscope, the following
connections must be made to use the MAC III in your system. A
complete wiring diagram is available in Appendix A.
Power Cord Connect the power cord from the back of the MAC III
controller to building power. Do not power on the controller at this time.
Computer Connection Connect the RS-232 serial cable from the
SERIAL port on the MAC III controller to a COM port on your
computer. The port number will be automatically detected if your
computer has more than one COM port.
Head Electronics Box Connection Connect the shorter DB44 cable
from the MICROSCOPE connection on the MAC III controller to the
CONTROLLER connector on the Head Electronics box (HEB). The
HEB is meant to be placed on top of the MAC III box. Use a DB44
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cable between the MICROSCOPE connector on the HEB and the 44-pin
connector on the microscope base.
AFM Controller Connection Connect the longer DB44 cable from the
CONTROLLER connector on the MAC III to the PicoSPM II connector
on the AFM Controller.
BNC 1 and 2
applications.
These connectors are user configured outputs for custom
AUX The AUX connector has the drive output from each lock-in, a
drive-in that can be summed into each lock-in, and an auxiliary input to
each lock-in. The pin-out diagram is shown in Figure 116:
Figure 116 AUX Connector pin-out diagram
In this diagram the numbers refer to the slots in which the lock-in cards
sit inside the MAC III box. Lock-ins 1, 2 and 3 are located in slots 1, 3
and 5, respectively. The connections are as follows:
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
AUXIN 1-5
AUX inputs for each slot. AUXIN 1, 3 and 5
are the AUX inputs for Lock-ins 1, 2 and 3,
respectively.
Drive 1-5
The drive outputs from each slot. DRIVE 1, 3
and 5 are the Drive Out signals for Lock-ins
1, 2 and 3, respectively.
Drive_In
A single drive line that can optionally be
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summed in to any or all of the drives by
using Sum External Drive on the Lock-in
tab of the Advanced AC Modes window.
SP_RX and SP_TX lines These serial lines are not currently used.
Once all connections have been made it is safe to turn on power to all
components.
Hardware and Sample Setup
Most hardware and sample setup options with MAC III are identical to
those for standard AAC and MAC Mode operation, as covered in
Chapter 6, “AC Modes.” Please refer to Chapter 6 for the steps required
to set up the microscope for imaging.
MAC III Software Controls
PicoView software provides two ways to access and control the various
imaging modes.
Simplified Controls From the Mode menu, select the imaging mode
you wish to use. PicoView will open a window
with only the options required for that mode and
will automatically adjust settings to typical values
for that mode. This is the way that you will most
often use MAC III.
Advanced Controls The Controls > Advanced > AC Mode window
displays all of the possible MAC III options. This
window is used to create custom imaging setups,
or when more control is needed over a predefined
mode.
Simplified Software Control Options
Selecting an operating mode from the Mode menu will provide a
window with just the controls needed for that mode and will
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automatically adjust parameters to appropriate values. The changes will
also be visible in the Advanced AC Mode property sheet.
In this section we will describe the simplified controls for each mode.
Contact Mode
Contact mode does not require any MAC III-specific controls.
AC AFM
In AC mode the drive signal can be provided by either the Head
Electronics Box or the MAC III controller. To use the MAC III
controller as the AC source choose Controls > Setup > Options, then
select the Serial Port AC Mode Controller check box. The system will
now use the drive signal from the MAC III controller, through the HEB
to the microscope. Whenever the MAC III controller is connected, this
option should be selected to ensure proper operation.
AC Mode monitors and controls the oscillation amplitude of the
cantilever. Choosing Control > AC Mode opens the ACAFM Controls
window:
Figure 117 ACAFM Controls window
In AC Mode, Lock-in 1 is enabled by default, providing an oscillating
signal to drive the cantilever. The Deflection channel is selected as the
input for Lock-in 1 during laser and detector alignment. When an
approach is initiated, the input automatically switches to Amplitude.
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MAC III Mode
The following parameters are available in the ACAFM Controls
window:
Amplitude
Displays the amplitude, in volts, of cantilever
oscillation.
Drive (%)
The amplitude of the lock-in drive signal, stated as
a percentage (0-100 %) of the maximum available
10 V.
Frequency (kHz)
Displays the frequency of the lock-in signal. From
the AC Mode Tune window you can sweep the
frequency of Lock-in 1 to determine the resonance
frequency of the cantilever.
Gain
Multiplies the output of the lock-in by the selected
factor. Use a larger multiplier to improve the
signal-to-noise ratio for a small signal. Ensure that
the gain will not result in an amplitude exceeding
10 V, beyond which the signal will be clipped. The
default value is x1 (the amplitude times 1).
Drive Mechanism
The mechanism (AAC, MAC or Top MAC) used
on the microscope.
Zero Phase
Sets the phase at the current frequency to zero,
making it easier to interpret phase changes from
the current value.
Q Control On
By applying a phase-shifted version of the
cantilever drive signal on top of the drive signal, Q
control can either increase or decrease the
effective quality factor of the system. Select this
box to enable the Q Control feedback loop. By
default, Q Control is turned Off.
Drive (%)
Sets the amplitude of the Q Control phase-shifted
signal, stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available.
Optimize
Sets the optimal Q-Control Phase Shift and Drive.
When you initiate the approach, the Amplitude 1 and Phase 1 signals
will be routed through the Deflection and Friction channels,
respectively, to the main controller. During the laser and detector
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alignment procedure the Pass Through boxes will be selected to allow
the correct signals to pass through to the Laser Alignment window.
STM
STM does not require any MAC III-specific controls.
LFM
Contact mode does not require any MAC III-specific controls.
DLFM
In DLFM mode, Lock-in 1 is used to oscillate the tip in the direction of
the scan parallel to the sample surface, with the Friction channel as its
input. The Drive Mechanism is set to AAC. Cantilever deflection is
controlled as in Contact Mode.
CAUTION
The piezo element used to oscillate the cantilever in the DLFM nose
assembly is partially exposed; therefore, DLFM should never be used for
imaging in liquid.
Choose Mode > DLFM, then choose Controls > AC Mode to open the
DLFM Controls window:
Figure 118 DLFM Controls window
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Amplitude
Displays the amplitude, in volts, of cantilever
lateral oscillation amplitude.
Drive (%)
The amplitude of the lock-in drive signal, stated as
a percentage (0-100 %) of the maximum available
10 V.
Frequency (kHz)
Displays the frequency of the lock-in signal. From
the AC Mode Tune window you will be able to
sweep the frequency of Lock-in 1, to determine the
frequency at which the lateral tip deflection is
maximized (i.e., the resonant frequency).
Gain
Multiplies the output of the lock-in by the selected
factor. Use a larger multiplier to improve the
signal-to-noise ratio for a small signal. Ensure that
the gain will not result in an amplitude exceeding
10 V, beyond which the signal will be clipped. The
default value is x1 (the amplitude times 1).
Zero Phase
Sets the phase at the current frequency to zero,
making it easier to interpret phase changes from
the current value.
Q Control On
By applying a phase-shifted version of the
cantilever drive signal on top of the drive signal, Q
control can either increase or decrease the effective
quality factor of the system. Select this box to
enable the Q Control feedback loop. By default, Q
Control is turned Off.
Drive (%)
Sets the amplitude of the Q Control phase-shifted
signal, stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available.
Optimize
Sets the optimal Q-Control Phase Shift and Drive.
Amplitude 1 and Phase 1 are routed to the Aux 1 and Aux 2 outputs,
respectively. These signals can be viewed by selecting Aux 1 or Aux 2
from the drop-down list in the Realtime Images window.
FMM
In Force Modulation Mode, Lock-in 1 provides the oscillating signal
driving the cantilever. Constant cantilever deflection is maintained by
feeding back Deflection to the Input of Lock-in 1. The amplitude of
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cantilever modulation that results from this applied signal is monitored
as a measure of the sample’s elastic properties.
Force Modulation is a contact imaging mode and the Deflection signal
will be routed to the feedback loop.
Choose Mode > Force Modulation, then choose Controls > AC Mode to
open the Force Modulation Controls window:
Figure 119 Force Modulation Controls window
In Force Modulation Mode, Lock-in 1 is enabled, with the Deflection
channel as its input. The following settings are also available:
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Amplitude
Displays the amplitude, in volts, of cantilever
deflection.
Drive (%)
The amplitude of the lock-in drive signal, stated as
a percentage (0-100 %) of the maximum available
10 V.
Frequency (kHz)
Displays the frequency of the lock-in signal.
Gain
Multiplies the output of the lock-in by the selected
factor. Use a larger multiplier to improve the
signal-to-noise ratio for a small signal. Ensure that
the gain will not result in an amplitude exceeding
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10 V, beyond which the signal will be clipped. The
default value is x1 (the amplitude times 1).
Drive Mechanism
The mechanism (AAC, MAC or Top MAC).
Zero Phase
Sets the phase at the current frequency to zero,
making it easier to interpret phase changes from
the current value.
Q Control On
By applying a phase-shifted version of the
cantilever drive signal on top of the drive signal, Q
control can either increase or decrease the effective
quality factor of the system. Select this box to
enable the Q Control feedback loop. By default, Q
Control is turned Off.
Drive (%)
Sets the amplitude of the Q Control phase-shifted
signal, stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available.
Optimize
Sets the optimal Q-Control Phase Shift and Drive.
On the Output tab, the Pass Through boxes for Deflection and Friction
are selected, passing these values from the microscope through to the
AFM controller.
Amplitude 1 and Phase 1 are routed to the Aux 1 and Aux 2 outputs,
respectively, to be used as inputs to image buffers. These signals can be
viewed by selecting Aux 1 or Aux 2 from the drop-down list in the
Realtime Images window.
EFM
In EFM Mode, Lock-in 1 is used to drive the cantilever, with the
Deflection channel as its Input. Lock-in 2 provides an AC tip bias, also
with the Deflection channel as its Input. The actual Deflection input
during scanning is the oscillation amplitude.
NOTE
For EFM mode, the Bias switch on the back of the Head Electronics Box
must be set to Tip.
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Choose Mode > EFM to open the EFM Controls window:
Figure 120 EFM Controls window
The Main tab includes settings for Lock-in 1 and Q-Control:
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Amplitude
Displays the amplitude, in volts, of cantilever
oscillation amplitude.
Drive (%)
The amplitude of the Lock-in 1 drive signal, stated
as a percentage (0-100 %) of the maximum
available 10 V.
Frequency (kHz)
Displays the frequency of the Lock-in 1 signal.
From the AC Mode Tune window you can sweep
the frequency of Lock-in 1, to determine the
frequency at which the tip oscillation is maximized
(i.e., the resonant frequency).
Gain
Multiplies the output of the lock-in by the selected
factor. Use a larger multiplier to improve the
signal-to-noise ratio for a small signal. Ensure that
the gain will not result in an amplitude exceeding
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10 V, beyond which the signal will be clipped. The
default value is x1 (the amplitude times 1).
Zero Phase
Sets the phase at the current frequency to zero,
making it easier to interpret phase changes from the
current value.
Q Control On
By applying a phase-shifted version of the
cantilever drive signal on top of the drive signal, Q
control can either increase or decrease the effective
quality factor of the system. Select this box to
enable the Q Control feedback loop. By default, Q
Control is turned Off.
Drive (%)
Sets the amplitude of the Q Control phase-shifted
signal, stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available.
Optimize
Sets the optimal Q-Control Phase Shift and Drive.
The EFM tab shows the parameters for Lock-in 2. Drive, Frequency and
Gain settings have the same functions as described for Lock-in 1 above.
As mentioned, Lock-in 2 is used as the source for the AC tip bias. You
will typically need to sweep the frequency of Lock-in 2 to ensure that
the electrical response of the cantilever does not interfere with the
mechanical response provided by Lock-in 1 and to see if there are any
other resonances present. To do so, select the EFM Tune check box,
then choose Manual Tune in the AC Mode Tune window. Determining
the best frequency for your sample and tip will require some iteration.
Two rules typically apply:
• The frequency should not be an integral factor of the Lock-in 1
frequency.
• The frequency should not be close (within 10-20 kHz) to the
Lock-in 1 frequency.
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Optimize Phase shifts the phase signal to maximize the X Component 2
(i.e., to maximize contrast).
X Component 2 and Phase 2 are routed to the Aux 1 and Aux 2 outputs,
respectively, for monitoring. To view changes in the EFM signal,
choose Aux 1 in the Realtime Images window.
KFM
In KFM Mode, Lock-in 1 is used to drive the cantilever, with the
Deflection channel as its Input. Lock-in 2 provides an AC tip bias, also
with the Deflection channel as its Input. A DC bias is provided by an
internal servo mechanism to counter vertical deflection of the tip.
NOTE
For KFM mode, the Bias switch on the back of the Head Electronics Box
must be set to Tip.
Choose Mode > KFM to open the KFM Controls window:
Figure 121 KFM Controls window
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The Main tab shows settings for Lock-in 1 and Q-Control:
Amplitude
Displays the amplitude, in volts, of cantilever
oscillation amplitude.
Drive (%)
The amplitude of the Lock-in 1 drive signal,
stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available 10 V.
Frequency (kHz)
Displays the frequency of the Lock-in 1 signal.
From the AC Mode Tune window you can
sweep the frequency of Lock-in 1, to determine
the frequency at which the tip oscillation is
maximized (i.e., the resonant frequency).
Gain
Multiplies the output of the lock-in by the
selected factor. Use a larger multiplier to
improve the signal-to-noise ratio for a small
signal. Ensure that the gain will not result in an
amplitude exceeding 10 V, beyond which the
signal will be clipped. The default value is x1
(the amplitude times 1).
Zero Phase
Sets the phase at the current frequency to zero,
making it easier to interpret phase changes from
the current value.
Q Control On
By applying a phase-shifted version of the
cantilever drive signal on top of the drive signal,
Q control can either increase or decrease the
effective quality factor of the system. Select this
box to enable the Q Control feedback loop. By
default, Q Control is turned Off.
Drive (%)
Sets the amplitude of the Q Control phase-shifted
signal, stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available.
Optimize
Sets the optimal Q-Control Phase Shift and
Drive.
The KFM tab shows the parameters for Lock-in 2. Drive, Frequency and
Gain settings have the same functions as described for Lock-in 1 above.
As mentioned, Lock-in 2 is used as the source for the AC tip bias. You
will typically need to sweep the frequency of Lock-in 2 to ensure that
the electrical response of the cantilever does not interfere with the
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mechanical response provided by Lock-in 1 and to see if there are any
other resonances present.
To do so, select the KFM Tune check box, then choose Manual Tune in
the AC Mode Tune window. Determining the best frequency for your
sample and tip will require some iteration. Two rules typically apply:
• The frequency should not be an integral factor of the Lock-in 1
frequency.
• The frequency should not be close (within 10-20 kHz) to the
Lock-in 1 frequency.
Optimize Phase shifts the phase signal to maximize the X Component 2
(i.e., to maximize contrast).
The output from the servo is routed to the SP Channel and to the Drive
Offset of Lock-in 2. To map the output (which is the KFM signal),
choose SP in the Realtime Images window.
I Gain and P Gain are the Integral and Proportional Gains for the MAC
III internal servo loop. Set the I and P Gains to obtain the sharpest image
in the Realtime Images window.
X Component 2 and Phase 2 are routed to the Aux 1 and Aux 2 outputs,
respectively, for monitoring. To view changes in the EFM signal,
choose Aux 1 in the Realtime Images window.
Advanced Software Control Options
The Advanced AC Mode property sheet gives you more signal routing
and control options than the simplified options described above. To
view the AC Mode settings click Controls > Advanced >AC Mode. The
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AC Mode window includes several tabs, each of which is described
below.
Lock-In Tabs
Each of the three lock-ins includes its own tab with the following
Settings:
Figure 122 Advanced AC Mode Controls window: Lock-in tab
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Amplitude
Displays the amplitude, in volts, of whatever
is being driven by the lock-in drive. For
example, if the lock-in is driving the
cantilever, the oscillation amplitude (as
measured by the photo detector) is reported.
Drive (%)
The amplitude of the Lock-in 1 drive signal,
stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available 10 V.
Frequency (kHz)
Displays the frequency of the Lock-in 1
signal. From the AC Mode Tune window
you can sweep the frequency of Lock-in 1,
to determine the frequency at which the tip
oscillation is maximized (i.e., the resonant
frequency).
Gain
Multiplies the output of the lock-in by the
selected factor. Use a larger multiplier to
improve the signal-to-noise ratio for a small
signal. Ensure that the gain will not result in
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an amplitude exceeding 10 V, beyond which
the signal will be clipped. The default value
is x1 (the amplitude times 1).
Bandwidth
How far to either side of the selected
Frequency the lock-in circuitry is able to
process information. Bandwidth can range
from 40 Hz to 20 kHz. The default
“Automatic” setting will adjust the
bandwidth based on the Input signal.
Input
The source signal that is routed to the input
of the lock-in. Choosing Aux will route the
signal from the MAC III controller’s AUX
connector to the lock-in input. The default
Input is the cantilever Deflection.
Phase Offset
Applies an offset to the calculated phase
signal. The value, stated in degrees, is 0 by
default; however, it can be adjusted such
that the calculated phase will read 0, making
it easier to interpret changes in phase. The
Auto Tune function (Controls > AC Mode
Tune) will automatically set this offset
value.
Lock-In Harmonic
Setting this value will drive the reference
signals at a fraction or multiple of the drive
signal. This value allows you to examine the
signal at harmonics of the drive signal. The
default value is 1.
Drive Offset
Applies an offset, in volts, to the drive
signal. The default value is 0.
Select the From Servo check box to add the
output from the MAC III internal servo loop
to the drive signal. This option is used in
KFM Mode, in which the servo acts to
maintain a DC Tip Bias that counteracts any
electrostatic field on the sample. The servo
output, therefore, will change as the sample
charge changes; this value is also fed to the
SP channel for imaging.
Phase Shift (°)
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Each lock-in includes two, orthogonal
reference signals. This parameter will shift
the phase of the reference signals with
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respect to the drive signal (they will remain
orthogonal to each other). This feature is
useful, for example, to maximize the real
component of the drive signal in KFM
mode. The default value is 0.
Sum External Drive
Select this box to add a signal from the AUX
input to the lock-in drive signal. By default
the box not selected.
Y Component from AUX Select this box to add a signal from the AUX
input to the Y component of the lock-in
drive signal. This option essentially converts
the lock-in to an A/D converter, providing a
quick method for measuring an external
signal. By default the box is not selected.
Note that when the box is selected, the
channel will no longer function as a lock-in
since its input value is overridden.
Outputs Tab
The Output tab options set the routing paths between the MAC III
physical and internal connections.
Figure 123 Advanced AC Mode Controls window: Outputs tab
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Drive Out
Routes the output from one of the three lock-in
signals to the circuit controlling oscillation of the
cantilever (either AAC or MAC, depending on your
setup). Set this option to GND to turn off the output
from the MAC III. The default value is Drive 1 (the
output from Lock-in 1).
Sample Bias
The Sample Bias is set in the Servo window and, by
default, is sent from the AFM controller to the
microscope. This option allows you to add the signal
from one of the MAC III lock-ins to the Sample
Bias, or to replace the Sample Bias completely.
(Either Tip Bias or Sample Bias is selected in the
Main tab).
First, select the Lock-in. Select the Sum check box
to add the Lock-in signal to the Sample Bias; clear
the box to replace the Sample Bias with the lock-in
signal.
Select Sum plus GND to pass the Sample Bias from
the AFM controller directly to the microscope.
These are the default settings.
Tip Bias
The Tip Bias is also set under the Main tab of the
Servo window and, by default, sent from the AFM
controller to the microscope. The choice between
Tip or Sample bias is made under the Advanced tab
in the Servo window. This option allows you to add
the signal from one of the MAC III lock-ins to the
Tip Bias, or to replace the Tip Bias completely.
First, select the Lock-in. Select the Sum check box
to add the Lock-in signal to the Tip Bias; clear the
box to replace the Tip Bias with the lock-in signal.
Select Sum plus GND to pass the Tip Bias from the
AFM controller directly to the microscope. These
are the default settings.
Ref Set
Ref Set is the set point for the electrochemistry
potentiostat.
First, select the Lock-in. Select the Sum check box
to add the Lock-in signal to the Ref Set value; clear
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the box to replace the Ref Set value with the lock-in
signal.
Select Sum plus GND to pass the Ref Set value from
the AFM controller directly to the microscope.
These are the default settings.
BNC 1 and 2
Each of the Lock-ins includes seven output
channels: Deflection, Friction, SP and AUX 1-4.
These output signals are routed to the AFM
controller. They can also be duplicated at the two
BNC connectors on the MAC III controller for
additional routing flexibility.
By default, Deflection is routed to BNC1, and
Friction is routed to BNC2. The actual signal sent to
the BNC connectors is selected in the Output
Channels, described next.
Outputs
The MAC III controller includes seven outputs
(Deflection, Friction, SP, AUX 1-4) that are routed
to the AFM controller for imaging.
Each output can carry one of thirteen signals: the
Amplitude, Phase, X Component or Y Component
of the three lock-in signals; or the output of the
MAC III internal servo. Selecting GND for any
output sets its output to 0.
By default, the Deflection output carries Amplitude
1 (the amplitude of Lock-in 1 output). The Friction
output carries Phase 1. The remaining outputs are
set to GND.
Select the Pass Through check box for each output
to pass the signal directly from the microscope to the
AFM controller without further contribution from
the MAC III controller. By default, Pass Through is
selected for each output.
NOTE
In KFM Mode, the SP (Scanning Potential) channel is set to Servo Output
and the Pass Through box is not selected. The Servo Output is the DC
bias produced by the servo to counteract the sample bias.
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Other Tab
The Other tab includes additional parameters that control MAC III
operation:
Figure 124 Advanced AC Mode window: Other tab
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Drive
Selects the drive mechanism (AAC, standard MAC
or Top MAC).
I Gain
The Integral Gain to the MAC III internal servo
loop. The default value is 0.
P Gain
The Proportional Gain to the MAC III servo. The
default value is 0.
Setpoint (V)
The voltage which the servo will try to maintain.
Input
Routes the Amplitude, Phase, X Component or Y
Component from the three lock-in signals to the
MAC III servo input. This is the signal that the servo
will maintain at the selected Setpoint. Selecting
GND, the default setting, provides no signal to the
servo.
Q Control On
By applying a phase-shifted version of the
cantilever drive signal on top of the drive signal, Q
control can either increase or decrease the effective
quality factor of the system. Select this box to enable
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the Q Control feedback loop. By default, Q Control
is turned Off.
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Drive (%)
Sets the amplitude of the Q Control phase-shifted
signal, stated as a percentage (0-100 %) of the
maximum available.
Phase Shift (°)
Shifts the Q Control feedback signal with respect to
the input.
Sweep
Selects the lock-in for which the frequency will be
swept on the AC Mode Tune window. Only one
lock-in can be swept at a time. Reverts to Lock-in 1
when AutoTune is selected in the AC Mode Tune
window. Use Manual Tune to sweep the other
lock-ins.
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Liquid Cell
Liquid Cell with Standard Sample Plate
Liquid Cell with MAC Mode 193
Flow-Through Liquid Cell 193
191
The liquid cell enables in-situ AFM or STM imaging for better control
under realistic environments. The cell is made from chemical-resistant
polycarbonate and can be used with a wide variety of liquids. The cell
can be used in conjunction with a standard, MAC Mode or temperature
control sample plates.
A flow-through version of the liquid cell is also available with 0.9 mm
holes included for tubing.
Eight-degree angle nose assemblies are recommended for imaging in
liquid because the smaller angle takes into account the different angle
the laser makes as it goes in and out of the fluid, compared to operation
in air.
CAUTION
Some nose assemblies, such as the two-piece nose assemblies, are not
sealed and should never be used for imaging in liquid. Be sure to use only
approved nose assemblies for imaging with the liquid cell.
Figure 125 shows the components of the liquid cell: two retaining clips,
an O-ring gasket and the liquid cell plate. Figure 126 shows the
components as assembled on a standard sample plate. Note that, when
assembled, the sample itself comprises the bottom of the liquid
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container; therefore, the sample must be large enough for the O-ring to
seat.
Figure 125 Liquid cell components
Figure 126 Liquid cell mounted on standard sample plate
Liquid Cell with Standard Sample Plate
One challenge with using the liquid cell is to locate the region of interest
through the liquid. It is typically easier to first locate the dry sample and
then to add the liquid, as follows:
1 Prepare and place the sample on the sample plate.
2 Place the sample plate on the microscope.
3 Using the Close switch on the Head Electronics Box, and watching
the video system, roughly approach the sample such that the tip and
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sample are almost touching (i.e., both the tip and sample are close to
focus).
4 In PicoView, click the Approach button to place the tip in contact
with the surface.
5 Use the video system to locate the region of interest.
CAUTION
Be extremely careful when moving the scanner while using the liquid cell.
Clearance is limited, and contact between the scanner and cell will
damage the scanner.
6 Now, in PicoView click the Withdraw button to take the tip out of
contact with the surface.
7 Use the motor controls to move the scanner several millimeters from
the sample, providing enough clearance to safely remove the sample
plate. Be sure to note the distance that the scanner is moved—you
will need it to accurately re-engage the tip and sample shortly.
8 Remove the sample plate from microscope.
9 Place the O-ring on the sample plate so that it encompasses the
sample.
10 Place the liquid cell plate over the O-ring and sample, such that it
aligns with the sample plate’s spring-loaded pins.
11 Push one of the pins up through the liquid cell plate and slide one of
the retaining clips into the groove in the pin. Repeat for the other pin.
The liquid cell is now firmly attached and sealed to the sample plate.
NOTE
Make sure that the liquid cell plate sits flat against the sample plate to
create a good seal and prevent leakage. If necessary, use a flat head
screwdriver to adjust the tension on the two retaining pins.
12 Add the appropriate liquid to the cell. Use enough liquid to submerge
the sample but not so much that the liquid rises to the top of the cell.
This will prevent spillage as the scanner moves into the cell.
13 Replace the sample plate on the microscope.
14 Move the scanner down the same distance it was moved up in step 6,
such that the tip is now just above the sample surface. You will need
to adjust the photodetector position due to the change of the laser
location caused by the laser now going through liquid.
15 If necessary, readjust the photodetector position to account for the
change of laser location caused by the liquid.
16 Approach and contact the sample.
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17 Because of the large movements involved in placing and aligning the
liquid cell, you will likely need to adjust both the detector and the
scanner position before imaging.
Liquid Cell with MAC Mode
The procedure for setting up the cell for MAC Mode imaging is similar
to that described above. However, the MAC mode sample plate contains
a ferrite core that can react when placed in solution or in contact with
the sample. Therefore, a cover slip should be placed over the core, and
the sample placed on the cover slip, to ensure that the core does not
contact the sample or liquid.
Flow-Through Liquid Cell
A liquid cell is also available with connections allowing liquid to flow
continuously through the cell. The connections should be made with
1 mm OD Teflon tubing, cut at a sharp angle for insertion into the cell.
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Temperature Control
Cantilevers for Temperature Controlled Imaging 194
High Temperature Sample Plates 195
Connections 197
Imaging 200
Peltier (Cold MAC) Sample Plate 202
Connections 204
Water Cooling 206
Imaging 207
Tips for Temperature Controlled Imaging 208
Several temperature control sample plates are available for use with the
Agilent 5500 SPM. With temperature control, studies can be done while
maintaining physiological temperature, for melting experiments, etc.
Cantilevers for Temperature Controlled Imaging
Uncoated silicon cantilevers are recommended for imaging under
temperature control. Cantilevers that are coated on one side will bend
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due to the difference in thermal expansion of the coated and uncoated
sides. The bending may adversely affect imaging.
High Temperature Sample Plates
Two high temperature sample plates are available. The standard hot
sample plate (Figure 127) provides a temperature range from ambient to
250 C.
Figure 127 Standard hot sample plate
The Hot MAC sample plate (Figure 128) provides temperatures from
ambient to 110 C and enables imaging in MAC Mode.
Figure 128 Hot MAC sample plate
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The Lakeshore 332 Temperature Controller (Figure 129) drives the high
temperature plates.
Figure 129 Lakeshore temperature controller
CAUTION
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The ramping rate should be keep below 10 degrees per minute to avoid
damaging the plate.
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Connections
Figure 130 shows the three cables included with both high temperature
sample plates:
Figure 130 High temperature sample plate cables
The Hot MAC sample plate also includes a Y connector for the MAC
cable (Figure 131).
Figure 131 Hot MAC sample stage Y cable.
Figure 132 shows the required wiring for the hot sample plate.
Figure 133 shows the wiring for the hot MAC sample plate.
The connection at the end of Cable 1 enables wiring to the temperature
stages through a port in the environmental chamber. Fold the straight
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connector parallel to the cable and pass it through a port in the chamber.
Then screw the round connector into the port to make a tight seal.
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Figure 132 Hot sample plate wiring diagram
Figure 133 Hot MAC sample plate wiring diagram
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Note that Cable 3 includes a tab on the black-wire side of the connector
(Figure 134). The tab must face the Lo jack on the controller.
Figure 134 Tab side of Cable 3 must be inserted into the Lo jack.
Imaging
1 Set up the microscope for typical operation. As mentioned, uncoated
silicon probes are highly recommended.
2 Mount the sample on the sample plate. Do not use double-sided tape
to mount the sample because the glue may soften or melt, causing
large sample drift.
3 Turn on the Lakeshore temperature controller.
4 On the Lakeshore controller’s front panel, press the Heater Off
button.
5 Press Auto Tune, then press the Up or Down arrow buttons until the
display read Tune:Manual.
6 Set the Proportional, Integral and Differential gains. Typical
values are 20, 20 and 100 respectively.
7 Press Setpoint and enter a value slightly lower than room
temperature (23 C). Wait for the setpoint value to stabilize.
NOTE
When turned on, the Lakeshore controller will attempt to adjust the plate
temperature to the last selected temperature, as quickly as possible.
Depending on the sample, and the last temperature setting, this can be
detrimental to the plate and/or sample. Beginning with a setpoint slightly
below ambient avoids this problem.
8 Set the Ramp Rate to no more than 10 degrees per minute (5
degrees/minute is a typical ramp rate).
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9 Press the Heater Range button and select Low, Medium or High.
CAUTION
Do NOT use the High setting with a Peltier (cooling) plate (see below).
10 Press the Setpoint button and enter the desired final temperature.
11 Allow the temperature to stabilize.
12 Initiate an approach.
13 Image as usual.
Imaging during temperature ramp is possible provided care is taken to
compensate for sample thermal expansion. Monitor the Z-piezo position
as the temperature increases to determine if/when it goes out of range.
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13
Peltier (Cold MAC) Sample Plate
The Peltier Cold MAC sample plate lets you image in contact, AAC,
MAC or STM Modes at controlled temperatures below or near ambient
temperature (Figure 135). The 1X Peltier plate provides a temperature
range of -5 to 40 C.
Figure 135 Peltier (Cold MAC) sample plate.
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The Lakeshore 332 Temperature Controller (Figure 129) is also used
with the Peltier plate.
The current booster (Figure 136) is used to drive the Peltier sample plate
temperature. The booster includes a safety device that shuts off the
power if the reverse side of the Peltier becomes excessively hot.
Figure 136 Current booster
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Connections
Figure 137 shows the three cables included with the Peltier sample
plate:
Figure 137 Peltier sample plate cables
The Peltier sample plate also includes a special MAC cable for use with
MAC Mode (Figure 138).
Figure 138 MAC cable for Peltier sample plate
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Figure 139 shows the required wiring for the Peltier sample plate. The
connection at the end of Cable 1 enables wiring to the temperature
stages through a port in the environmental chamber.
Figure 139 Peltier (Cold MAC) sample plate wiring diagram.
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Temperature Control
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Note that Cable 3 includes a tab on the black-wire side of the connector
(Figure 140). The tab must face the Lo jack on the controller.
Figure 140 Tab side of Cable 3 must be inserted into the Lo jack
Water Cooling
When a sample is cooled using the Peltier sample plate the opposite side
of the Peltier device becomes hot. The hot side is water cooled to
decrease the minimum sample temperature, reduce power requirements
and prevent overheating. Inlets are provided on the underside of the
Peltier sample plate to connect water cooling tubing.
A gravity-fed water-cooling system (Figure 141) is preferred over
mechanical pumping because it reduces the potential for vibration that
can affect imaging. Two reservoirs are provided with the Peltier sample
plate, one to be used as a source and the other as a receptacle to store
water for recycling. A height difference of three feet between the source
and receptacle gives a minimum temperature of -25 C or
approximately 50 C below room temperature. Ice can be added to the
reservoir to increase efficiency for a minimum temperature of -30 C.
CAUTION
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Connect the water-cooling system and test for leaks before making any
electronic connections or turning on any components.
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Figure 141 Gravity-fed water cooling system for Peltier sample plate.
Imaging
1 Set up the microscope for typical operation. As mentioned above,
uncoated silicon probes are highly recommended.
2 Mount the sample on the sample plate.
3 Set the Range control on the current booster to its minimum setting
(fully counterclockwise).
4 Set the current booster to 1X.
5 Turn on the Lakeshore controller and current booster.
6 On the Lakeshore controller’s front panel, press Auto Tune, then
press the Up or Down arrow buttons until the display read
Tune:Manual. Press Enter.
7 Set the Proportional, Integral and Differential gains. Typical
values are 12, 12 and 5 respectively.
8 Press Setpoint and enter a value slightly lower than room
temperature 23 C. Wait for the setpoint temperature to stabilize.
NOTE
The Lakeshore controller will attempt to adjust the temperature to the last
selected temperature as quickly as possible. Depending on the sample,
and the last temperature setting, this can be detrimental to the plate
and/or sample. Setting the temperature to ambient avoids this problem.
9 Set the Ramp Rate to no more than 10 degrees per minute (5
degrees/minute is a typical ramp rate).
10 Turn the Range control on the current booster to maximum (fully
clockwise).
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11 On the Lakeshore controller press Heater Range and select Low.
12 Press the Setpoint button and enter the desired final temperature.
13 Allow the temperature to stabilize.
14 Initiate an approach.
Tips for Temperature Controlled Imaging
• Make sure there is good thermal contact between the sample and the
sample plate. If possible, mount the sample using the liquid cell even
for ambient imaging.
• Double-sided tape reduces thermal conductivity as well as
introducing sample drift. Therefore it should not be used to mount
samples for temperature controlled experiments.
• It is possible to ramp the temperature while imaging. Use slow
ramps, typically less than 1 C per minute.
• Every sample will react differently to temperature control. A thin
piece of graphite is a good test sample to use while setting up the
temperature control system.
• Temperature fluctuations due to excessive gains will cause the
surface to appear wavy. Reduce gains on the Lakeshore controller to
reduce this waviness.
• Imaging in the environmental chamber is recommended as it will
help keep the temperature stable. Purging the environmental cell
with a dry gas such as nitrogen will help control the sample
environment if condensation from cooling to below the dew point
becomes an issue.
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Environmental Control
Environmental Chamber
Glove Box 212
209
In addition to the vibration isolation chamber mentioned earlier in this
User’s Guide, two other options are available to let you control the
atmosphere for sample preparation and/or imaging.
Environmental Chamber
The environmental control chamber (Figure 142) lets you isolate
samples for imaging in a controlled atmosphere. It can also provide
excellent acoustic isolation and protection from air movement, even
when atmosphere control is not required. The chamber operates at
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Environmental Control
14
atmospheric pressure and is not intended to provide a vacuum or high
pressure environment.
Figure 142 Environmental chamber
The environmental chamber includes eight ports which may be used to
introduce or remove gases from the chamber, or to allow wiring access
for sensors or other electronics. Several types of screw-in fittings are
available from Agilent for wires, liquids or 3 mm (1/8 in) inner diameter
gas tubing. The ports can be used in any combination. For example, one
gas port may be used to introduce a gas while another simultaneously
vents the chamber (i.e., when the gas cannot be safely vented directly
into the lab). One such example would be a non-aqueous
electrochemistry experiment requiring the saturation of an inert as with
an organic solvent.
To use the chamber:
1 Prepare the sample on a sample plate.
2 Mount the sample plate on the microscope.
3 Loosen the retaining screws on the front right and left corners of the
microscope base and swing the top section up on its hinge.
4 Lower the microscope base over the environmental chamber, being
careful to avoid contact with the sample plate. The legs of the
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microscope base will fit into grooves in the environmental chamber
base.
5 Swing the microscope back down over the environmental chamber.
A groove in the underside of the microscope plate provides a tight
seal with the gasket on the top of the chamber (Figure 143).
Figure 143 Environmental chamber on microscope
6 Secure the environmental chamber to the base plate with the four
thumb screws (two in front, two in the rear).
7 Tighten the two retaining screws to hold the top plate down.
The chamber also provides an excellent way to displace oxygen from
solutions used in electrochemistry experiments. Good results have been
obtained by first bubbling an inert gas (nitrogen or argon) through the
solution to be placed into the liquid cell, and then setting the
environmental chamber up with a steady flow-through rate of 1 to
2 SCFH.
When the microscope and environmental chamber are placed inside the
vibration isolation chamber, tubes and cables can be routed to the
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environmental chamber through a hole in the side of the vibration
chamber.
Glove Box
The glove box lets you create a controlled environment for both sample
preparation and imaging. As with the environmental chamber, the glove
box includes eight ports for introducing gases, liquids or wires into the
chamber. The clear acrylic box is 244 mm (9.6 in) high, 325 mm
(12.8 in) wide and 351 mm (13.8 in) deep and can be used at
temperatures below 0C. The gloves are heavy duty, 15 mil Latex.
Figure 144 Glove Box
The 5500 SPM mounts directly to the top of the box’s stainless steel
mounting plate, with the stage motor screws and sample plate extending
into the box.
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Electrochemistry
Equipment 216
Liquid Cell 216
Electrodes 216
Working Electrode and Pogo Electrode
Reference Electrode 217
Counter Electrode 217
Cleaning 218
Liquid Cell Cleaning 218
Non-Critical Applications 218
Critical Applications 218
Electrode Cleaning 219
Sample Plate Cleaning 219
Substrate Cleaning 219
Assembling and Loading the Liquid Cell 219
Troubleshooting 220
Electrochemistry Definitions 220
Software Controls 221
Potentiostat 221
Galvanostat 222
216
The electrical potential that exists across the interface between a metal
surface and an electrolytic solution is known as the “surface potential.”
This is the driving force behind such processes as adsorption, desorption
and electron-transfer reactions. Quantifying and controlling this
potential is the science of electrochemistry.
Metal electrodes placed into an electrolytic solution will register a net
potential composed of two unknown potential drops, one across each
electrode-electrolyte interface. A third, chemically reactive reference
electrode is maintained in equilibrium with the ions in solution that are
oxidized and reduced at its surface. To maintain this equilibrium, the
concentrations of reactants must be held constant at the electrode
surface, as is true when negligible current flows through the reference
electrode.
Figure 145 shows a typical electrochemistry setup, while Figure 146
shows that same setup created with the 5500 SPM liquid cell. Note that
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Electrochemistry
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electrochemistry experiments can be conducted using either AFM
Modes or STM Mode.
NOTE
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
As of the writing of this manual, electrochemistry requires PicoScan
software. An upcoming release of PicoView software will also include
electrochemistry functionality.
214
Electrochemistry
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Figure 145 Electrochemistry experiment schematic
Figure 146 Electrochemistry experimental setup using liquid cell
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Electrochemistry
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Equipment
The equipment needed to perform electrochemistry experiments can be
as simple as a liquid cell and electrodes, or as complex as a
flow-through pump system with a temperature-controlled sample stage.
The basic components are described below.
Liquid Cell
The liquid cell, described earlier in this manual, enables imaging in a
liquid (Figure 145). The cell is 15 mm (0.59 in) in diameter and seals
over the sample with an o-ring. The sample surface must be very flat
and larger than the diameter of the cell to avoid leakage.
Electrodes
Three electrodes are typically required for electrochemistry
experiments. The experiment being performed will determine the type
of wire to be used for the reference and counter electrodes. The type of
wire will affect the voltage readings. Prepared electrodes may be
purchased from Agilent Technologies, or wires may be formed into
appropriate electrodes using the following approximate dimensions.
Working Electrode and Pogo Electrode
Contact between the working electrode (WE) on the sample plate and
the sample itself is typically accomplished using the L-shaped pogo
electrode included with the system (Figure 147). The pogo contacts the
sample through a separate access hole outside of the liquid cell chamber.
Since it is not in contact with the electrolyte it does not require special
cleaning. A wire made to the same dimensions can be used in place of
the pogo.
Figure 147 Pogo electrode
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Reference Electrode
The reference electrode (RE) should have a diameter of 0.51 mm
(0.02 in). It will sit within the electrolyte but will not contact the
working electrode (sample).
Figure 148 Reference electrode
Counter Electrode
The counter electrode (CE) is typically made from platinum-iridium
wire (Figure 149). It should encompass as much of the inner rim of the
liquid cell as possible. It may be useful to make the diameter of the
electrode slightly larger than the diameter of the cell, so that the
electrode will hold itself in place against the walls of the cell.
Figure 149 Counter electrode
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Cleaning
Thorough cleaning of all components will greatly improve the results of
electrochemistry experimentation. Suggestions for cleaning each
component are given below.
Liquid Cell Cleaning
The liquid cell should be cleaned prior to every use according to these
instructions:
Non-Critical Applications
1 Sonicate the liquid cell in laboratory detergent.
2 Rinse in 18 MW/cm water.
3 Rinse in methanol.
4 Blow dry under argon or nitrogen gas.
Critical Applications
1 Soak overnight in a solution of 70 % concentrated sulfuric acid and
30 % hydrogen peroxide (of 30 % v/v concentration).
WA RNING
Use extreme caution when handling this solution. It is a strong
oxidizing agent and extremely corrosive.
2 Rinse thoroughly, at least four times, in 18 MW/cm water.
3 Boil for one hour in 18 MW/cm water, changing the water every 15
minutes. You may instead rinse overnight in 18 MW/cm water.
4 Rinse two more times in 18 MW/cm water.
5 Dry under argon or nitrogen gas.
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Electrochemistry
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Electrode Cleaning
Electrodes should be carefully cleaned prior to assembling the liquid
cell. This may even include flame annealing of the electrodes prior to
use in certain cases.
Sample Plate Cleaning
Since the sample plate does not directly contact the sample surface or
electrolyte, a general cleaning with methanol or ethanol prior to
assembly is sufficient.
Substrate Cleaning
Substrates should be free of surface contaminants. Gold substrates
should be hydrogen flame annealed prior to imaging for best results.
Assembling and Loading the Liquid Cell
It is recommended that the assembly procedure be carried out in a
laminar flow hood, glove box or other clean environment. The work
surface should be well cleaned prior to assembling, and gloves should
be worn to prevent contaminating the electrodes and liquid cell. Refer to
Figure 146 for a view of the components described below.
1 Place a clean substrate onto the sample plate.
2 Push the liquid cell onto the spring-loaded pins on the sample plate.
Verify that the O-ring is in contact with the substrate at all points.
3 Push the spring-loaded pins up from the bottom to expose the pin
slots.
4 Insert the cell clamps into the slots and release the pins to hold the
liquid cell in place.
5 Place the pogo electrode into the hole in the wall of the liquid cell
nearest to the working electrode clamp.
6 Push the working electrode clamp up from the bottom and place the
end of the pogo under the clamp. Let the clamp spring back to hold
the electrode.
7 Use a multimeter to check for good conductivity between the sample
and the working electrode clamp.
NOTE
For improved conductivity an additional wire can be used to connect the
working electrode to the substrate through another hole on the liquid cell.
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Electrochemistry
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8 Insert the counter and reference electrodes into the sample plate
block (Figure 146). Push the spring-loaded clamp forward from
behind, insert the electrode and release the clamp.
9 Position the electrodes so that they will make good contact with the
electrolyte but will not touch the sample substrate or each other.
10 Use a multimeter to check for good conductivity between the
reference electrode and sample plate clamp, and between the counter
electrode and sample plate clamp.
11 With the multimeter verify that the reference and counter electrode
are not shorted to another electrode or to the substrate.
12 Verify that the AFM probe or STM tip will pass through the
electrodes without any contact.
13 Fill the liquid cell enough to submerge the sample. Check for leaks
and reposition the cell if necessary.
14 Verify that the counter electrode feedback is turned off in the
software and that the potentials are set appropriately for the
particular experiment.
15 Connect the sample plate to the microscope using the 3-pin
connector of the EC/MAC Cable.
16 Load the sample plate onto the microscope.
17 Approach the sample.
Troubleshooting
The most frequently encountered problem is leakage from around the
bottom of the liquid cell. It is generally more of a problem with solvents
that “wet” the substrate well, such as methanol. This causes leakage
current and erratic imaging. Make sure that the sample is flat and large
enough to fit underneath the liquid cell without gaps. Check that the
O-ring is clean and pliable. Tightening the sample plate screws will
increase pressure on the cell. Do not overtighten as this may crack the
liquid cell.
Electrochemistry Definitions
1 In STM Mode the tip is always virtual ground. Virtual ground means
that the potential of the probe is actively kept at ground by the
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operational amplifier, but the tip itself is not connected physically to
ground.
2 In AFM Mode the potential of the tip is determined by the setting of
the switch on the back of the Head Electronics Box (for conductive
cantilevers):
a If the switch is set to WE then the cantilever is biased to the same
potential as the working electrode (sample substrate).
b If the switch is set to Tip then the cantilever is tied to the tip bias
DAC output. This is typically ground unless the bias setting is
configured so that the probe is biased instead of the sample.
c
If the switch is set to BNC then the cantilever potential is the
same as the Cantilever BNC potential. This can be driven
externally or will float if nothing is connected to the BNC.
3 Sample Bias = WE.
4 Sample Potential = WE - RE.
5 Probe Potential = - RE.
a Sample Potential = Sample Bias + Probe Potential.
b The only two independently-controlled potentials are WE and
RE.
6 VEC = WE - RE
7 IEC = Current into or out of the working electrode. Positive is
flowing into the working electrode.
Software Controls
Potentiostat
The software potentiostat allows control of sample bias. When in
potentiostat mode, the microscope will maintain a constant voltage on
the working electrode, as long as the current required to do so is within
the limits of the hardware. Three potentials can be controlled: sample
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bias, probe potential and sample potential. Any one of these potentials
can be swept during cyclic voltammetry in the software.
In the most common configuration:
a Set the sample potential initially to the open circuit potential (i.e.,
the potential of the cell with the counter electrode turned off).
b Set the sample potential to be swept.
c
Fix the sample bias at an appropriate value for the image mode
selected.
d Setting any of the three controls to Swp will change the label on
the sweep range control to the appropriate selection. The potential
control not set to Swp or Fix will automatically be swept.
Typically EC and SPM are used in conjunction to view surfaces under
potential control. The potential is set to a particular value and the
surface imaged to show a particular feature. Next, the cell is allowed to
return to equilibrium, the potential is changed and the surface
re-imaged, to show changes due to changing potential. These
differences are typically due to ordering of molecules on the surface
caused by changing potential.
Choosing VEC and IEC as image channels allow the potential and
current flow in the cell to be saved consecutively with the image data for
future reference.
Galvanostat
The galvanostat allows control of the sample current. The current into or
out of the working electrode is measured and the voltage of the cell is
adjusted to maintain a constant value of current flow as long as the
voltage required to do so is within ±10 V.
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User’s Guide
Appendix A
Wiring Diagrams
Agilent 5500 SPM Standard Wiring Diagram 224
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode Controller 225
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode, Force Modulation Imaging 226
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option 227
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option and Closed Loop Scanner 228
The following pages contain wiring diagrams for several common
configurations of the Agilent 5500 SPM.
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A
224
Agilent 5500 SPM Standard Wiring Diagram
Wiring Diagrams
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Figure 150 Wiring diagram for Agilent 5500 standard configuration
A
225
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode Controller
Wiring Diagrams
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Figure 151 Wiring diagram for Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode Option
A
226
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode, Force Modulation Imaging
Wiring Diagrams
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Figure 152 Wiring diagram for Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC Mode Option, Force Modulation imaging mode
A
227
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option
Wiring Diagrams
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Figure 153 Wiring diagram for Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option
A
228
Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option and Closed Loop Scanner
Wiring Diagrams
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Figure 154 Wiring diagram for Agilent 5500 SPM with MAC III Option and Closed Loop Scanner option
Index
Index
A
D
AAC Mode, 103, 130
AC Mode, 24, 103, 113
Acoustic, 25, 103, 104, 130
Constant height, 109
Magnetic, 26, 103
Top MAC, 112
AC Mode Tune window, 105, 106
ACAFM, 25
Acoustic AC Mode, 25, 103, 104
Acoustic noise, 55, 56
Adhesion, 18
adhesion, 29
Adhesive force, 23
AFM, 21
Aging, 142
Air flow, 55
Amplitude, 25
Approach, 95, 96, 108, 118, 126, 132
Approach Range, 96
Atomic Force Microscopy, 21
Auto Tune, 107, 131
Deflection, 19, 22, 99, 121
Deflection signal, 80
Desiccator, 139
Detector, 22, 40
Alignment, 79
Gain switches, 80
DLFM Mode, 125
Dynamic Lateral Force Microscopy, 125
B
Bias voltage, 114, 117, 119, 130
Bow, 141
Buffer, 97, 110
C
Cables, 58, 71, 127
Calibration, 143, 154
Calibration file, 140, 152
Closed-loop, 154
CameraView, 47
Cantilevers, 65
Capillary force, 23
Closed-loop scanner
X/Y/Z axes, 154
Z-axis only, 153
Conductivity, 119
Contact Mode, 23, 29, 92, 123, 154
Constant Force mode, 93
Laser alignment, 82
Setting up, 93
Counter electrode, 217, 220
Creep, 142
Cross coupling, 141
CSAFM Mode, 27, 119
Current booster, 203
Current Sensing AFM, 27, 119
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
E
EC/MAC cable, 85, 111, 117, 120, 128, 164, 220
EFM Mode, 130, 134, 177
Elasticity, 18
elasticity, 28
Electrochemistry, 211, 213
Cleaning, 218
Liquid cell, 216, 217, 220
Electrode, 117, 120, 130, 213, 216
Cleaning, 219
Counter electrode, 217, 220
Flame annealing, 219
Pogo electrode, 216, 219
Reference electrode, 217, 220
Working electrode, 216, 219, 221
Electrostatic charge, 18
Electrostatic Force Microscopy, 130
Environmental chamber, 17, 87, 197, 205, 210, 211, 212
Error signal, 22
F
Facility requirements
Acoustic noise, 55
Air flow, 55
Power, 55
Utilities, 56
Water, 55
Flame annealing, 219
FMM Mode, 127
Force
Adhesive, 23
Capillary, 23
van der Waals, 23
Force Modulation Microscopy, 28, 127
Friction, 99, 123
friction, 29
Friction Force Microscopy, 29
Friction signal, 81
229
Index
G
Gains, 96, 108, 154
Optimizing, 101
Glove box, 212, 219
MAC Mode controller, 26, 27, 30, 31, 103, 110, 127, 162, 163,
165
Magnetic AC Mode, 26, 103
Manual Tune, 126
Microscope base, 80
Multi-purpose Scanner, 114, 119, 127, 139, 143
H
N
Head Electronics Box, 81, 93, 124, 162, 167, 221
HEB, 81, 93, 124, 162, 167, 221
Hot MAC sample plate, 195, 197, 199
Hot sample plate, 195, 197, 199
Humidity, 57
Hysteresis, 140, 146, 149
Nano-manipulation, 19
Non-linearity, 140, 145, 148
Nose assembly
Care and handling, 90, 138
One-piece, inserting, 60
One-piece, inserting probe, 64
One-piece, removing, 62
One-piece,removal, 63
Two-piece, assembly, 67
Two-piece, inserting, 67
Two-piece, inserting probe, 69
Two-piece, nose removal tool, 68
Two-piece, removal, 68
I
Isolation chamber, 57, 58
K
Kelvin Force Microscopy, 134
KFM Mode, 134, 180
L
Lakeshore controller, 196, 203
Laser
Align using video system, 76
Alignment, 74, 75
Alignment knobs, 72
Laser Alignment window, 80, 95
Lateral Force Microscopy, 29, 123
LFM Mode, 29, 123, 174
Liquid cell, 191, 211, 213, 216, 217, 219, 220
Approach, 192
Cleaning, 218
Flow-through cell, 193
With MAC Mode, 193
Lock-in, 130, 132, 166, 183
Gain, 132
M
MAC III controller, 26, 27, 30, 103, 110, 113, 127, 130, 132,
166
MAC III Mode, 166
Advanced software controls, 182
Components, 167
MAC Mode, 26, 103, 111, 113, 162
Cables, 163
Components, 162
MAC option, 162
Sample setup, 164
Top MAC option, 162
With liquid cell, 193
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
O
Off Peak, 107
Offset, 97, 154
P
Peak Amplitude, 107, 131
Peltier Cold MAC sample plate, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206
Phase, 25
Photodiode detector, 40, 79
PicoScan, 214
PicoView, 80, 214
Piezoes, 60, 139, 140, 142, 153
Pogo electrode, 216, 219
Power, 55
Probes, 18, 21, 65
Care and handling, 90, 138
Conductive, 120
Conductive for EFM, 130
Conductive for KFM, 134
Contact Mode, 93
DLFM, 125
STM, 114
Q
Q Control, 112, 131
R
Raster scan, 59, 99
Realtime Images window, 97, 98, 109, 118
230
Index
Reference electrode, 217, 220
Requirements
Acoustic noise, 56
Resolution, 97
Retrace, 141, 144
S
Sample plate, 216
Cleaning, 219
CSAFM, 120
Hot, 195, 197, 199
Hot MAC, 195, 197, 199
MAC, 111
Peltier Cold MAC, 202, 204, 205, 206
STM, 117
Scan
Initiate, 98
Number of frames, 100
Stop a scan, 100, 109
Scan and Motor window, 97, 108, 118
Scan settings
Frames, 109
Offset, 97
Offsets, 108
Optimizing, 101
Resolution, 97
Scan size, 108
Size, 97
Speed, 97, 108
Scanner
Aging, 142
Bow, 141
Calibration, 143, 152
Calibration file, 140
Care and handling, 90, 139
Closed-loop, calibration, 154
Closed-loop, X/Y/Z axes, 154
Closed-loop, Z-axis only, 153
Creep, 142
Cross coupling, 141
Hysteresis, 140, 146, 149
Installing detector, 80
Installing on microscope, 70
Laser alignment, 72
Maintenance, 137
Mounting jig, 60
Non-linearity, 140, 145, 148
Open-loop, 153
Sensitivity, 140, 147, 150, 151
Servo Gain Multiplier, 152
STM scanner, 115
STM scanner, inserting a tip, 116
Scanner Setup window, 154
Scanning Probe Microscopy, 18
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy, 20, 114
Sensitivity, 140, 147, 150, 151, 154
Servo Gain Multiplier, 152
Servo window, 96
Setpoint, 95, 96, 99, 109, 118, 121, 126, 132
Optimizing, 100
Agilent 5500 SPM User’s Guide
Size, 97
Spectroscopy, 135, 154
Speed, 97
Spring key, 64
STM Mode, 20, 114, 214
Constant current, 20
Constant height, 20
Stop At value, 108
T
Temperature control, 194
Cabling, 197, 204
Current booster, 203
Heater Range, 208
Heater range, 201
Imaging, 200, 207, 208
Lakeshore controller, 196, 203
Lakeshore controller Gains, 200, 207
Lakeshore controller Setpoint, 200
Peltier plate, 201
Ramp Rate, 200, 207
Ramping, 196
Sample plates, 195, 202, 204, 205, 206
Water-cooling, 206
Tips, 65
Conductive, 120
Conductive for EFM, 130
Conductive for KFM, 134
DLFM, 125
STM, 114
Top MAC Mode, 27, 112
Topography, 18, 19, 25, 121
U
Utility requirements, 56
V
van der Waals force, 23
Vibration isolation chamber, 211
Video system, 76
Focus, 94
Lateral position, 87
viscoelasticity, 28
W
Wiring, 58, 71, 127
Working electrode, 216, 219, 221
231
Agilent Technologies
5500 SPM User’s Guide
Part Number N9410-90001
© Agilent Technologies, Inc. 2008
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