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Atomic-force-microscope-compatible near-field scanning microwave microscope with separated excitation and sensing probes

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We present the design and experimental results of a near-field scanning microwave microscope working at a frequency of 1 GHz. Our microscope is unique in that the sensing probe is separated from the excitation electrode to significantly suppress the common-mode signal. Coplanar waveguides were patterned onto a silicon nitride cantilever interchangeable with atomic force microscope tips, which are robust for high speed scanning. In the contact mode that we are currently using, the numerical analysis shows that contrast comes from both the variation in local dielectric properties and the sample topography. Our microscope demonstrates the ability to achieve high resolution microwave images on buried structures, as well as nanoparticles, nanowires, and biological samples.

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Review of Scientific Instruments  (Volume:78 ,  Issue: 6 )