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Real-time detection of probe loss in atomic force microscopy

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4 Author(s)
De, Tathagata ; Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa 50011 ; Agarwal, P. ; Sahoo, D.R. ; Salapaka, M.V.

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In this letter, a real-time methodology is developed to determine regions of dynamic atomic force microscopy based image where the cantilever fails to be an effective probe of the sample. Conventional imaging signals such as the amplitude signal and the vertical piezoactuation signal cannot identify the areas of probe loss. It is experimentally demonstrated that probe-loss affected portion of the image can be unambiguously identified by a real-time signal called reliability index. Reliability index, apart from indicating the probe-loss affected regions, can be used to minimize probe-loss affected regions of the image, thus aiding high speed AFM applications.

Published in:

Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:89 ,  Issue: 13 )

Date of Publication:

Sep 2006

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