Microtech 2011

Calibrating the AFM with Self-Calibratable MEMS: An Theoretical Study

F. Li, J.V. Clark
Purdue University, US

Keywords: self-calibratable, MEMS, sensor, AFM, stiffness


To perform reliable scientific measurements with the atomic force microscope (AFM), it is important to calibrate the AFM cantilever. Conventional calibration methods have a 10 to 15% uncertainty, and the accuracies of such methods are unknown. These conventional techniques include the added weight method, the thermal vibration method, the layout geometry method, and the factory specification method. In this paper, we present a study on the proposed use of novel self-calibratable MEMS to calibrate AFM cantilever force, stiffness, and deflection. Our method uses self-calibratable MEMS with repeatable accuracy and quantifiable uncertainty. Our MEMS can be more easily fabricated in a simple 3-mask SOI process.

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