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We have observed the native oxide decomposition and local oxide growth on 6H-silicon carbide (0001) surface induced by atomic force microscopy (AFM). When the biased AFM probe was scanned over surface areas, native oxide was decomposed and assembled into protruded lines. The decomposition is accompanied by simultaneous graphitization of the scanned areas, leading to metal–semiconductor contact as evidenced in I–V characteristics. When the probe was immobilized and longer bias duration applied, direct oxidation of silicon carbide (SiC) surface was achieved. The dielectrical properties of AFM oxide on SiC were also investigated in terms of interface barrier height. © 2004 American Institute of Physics.