Mapping the Stiffness of Nanomaterials and Thin Films by Acoustic AFM Techniques


The determination of the stiffness of nanomaterials is essential to understanding their response to force and for the successful integration of these materials into devices. In this chapter we review acoustic atomic force microscope (AFM) techniques that are used to map the stiffness distribution of nanomaterials and thin films nondestructively and with high lateral resolution. We focus on three acoustic AFM techniques: force modulation microscopy (FMM), ultrasonic force microscopy (UFM), and contact resonance atomic force microscopy (CR-AFM). We explain the basics of the AFM tip–surface contact mechanics, the theoretical background of each acoustic AFM method, its use to determine the stiffness properties of nanomaterials and thin films, and its limitation. The techniques we discuss have been used to characterize the mechanical properties of a broad range of nanomaterials and thin films, including self-assembled monolayers, thin polymer films, nanocomposites, and biomaterials.

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Mapping the Stiffness of Nanomaterials and Thin Films by Acoustic AFM Techniques
Book Title
Handbook of Nanomaterials Properties
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  • Bharat Bhushan Send Email (1)
  • Dan Luo Send Email (2)
  • Scott R. Schricker Send Email (3)
  • Wolfgang Sigmund Send Email (4)
  • Stefan Zauscher Send Email (5)
  • Editor Affiliation
  • 1 Nanoprobe Laboratory for Bio- & Nanotechnology and Biomimetics, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA
  • 2 Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA
  • 3 Division of Restorative, Prosthetic and Primary Care, The Ohio State University, College of Dentistry, Columbus, Ohio, USA
  • 4 Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA
  • 5 Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, USA
  • Authors
  • Stefan Zauscher Send Email (6)
  • Zehra Parlak Send Email (6)
  • Qing Tu Send Email (6)
  • Author Affiliation
  • 6 Department of Mechanical Engineering and Material Science, Duke University, 144 Hudson Hall, 90300, Durham, NC, 27708, USA
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