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Low-noise magnetic force microscopy (MFM) was realized by using a conventional high-vacuum MFM with homemade tip-cooling equipment. The noise level of the MFM at a tip temperature of 130 K was estimated at μN/m order. High spatial resolution of 10 nm was obtained for observing high-density recording media with recording density of 1000 kfci. The improvement of resolution by tip cooling was a result of the reduction of thermodynamic noise of a cantilever and the effective reduction of tip-sample distance due to the magnetic hardening of a tip.
Date of Publication: Dec. 2005