Skip to Main Content
Your organization might have access to this article on the publisher's site. To check, click on this link:http://dx.doi.org/+10.1063/1.4765702
We present a platform for the quartz tuning fork (QTF)-based, frequency modulation atomic force microscopy (FM-AFM) system for quantitative study of the mechanical or topographical properties of nanoscale materials, such as the nano-sized water bridge formed between the quartz tip (∼100 nm curvature) and the mica substrate. A thermally stable, all digital phase-locked loop is used to detect the small frequency shift of the QTF signal resulting from the nanomaterial-mediated interactions. The proposed and demonstrated novel FM-AFM technique provides high experimental sensitivity in the measurement of the viscoelastic forces associated with the confined nano-water meniscus, short response time, and insensitivity to amplitude noise, which are essential for precision dynamic force spectroscopy and microscopy.