Sharp high-aspect-ratio AFM tips fabricated by a combination of deep reactive ion etching and focused ion beam techniques

David Caballero, Guillermo Villanueva, Jose Antonio Plaza, Christopher A. Mills, Josep Samitier, Abdelhamid Errachid

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The shape and dimensions of an atomic force microscope tip are crucial factors to obtain high resolution images at the nanoscale. When measuring samples with narrow trenches, inclined side- walls near 90° or nanoscaled structures, standard silicon atomic force microscopy (AFM) tips do not provide satisfactory results. We have combined deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) and focused ion beam (FIB) lithography techniques in order to produce probes with sharp rocket-shaped silicon AFM tips for high resolution imaging. The cantilevers were shaped and the bulk micromachining was performed using the same DRIE equipment. To improve the tip aspect ratio we used FIB nanolithography technique. The tips were tested on narrow silicon trenches and over biological samples showing a better resolution when compared with standard AFM tips, which enables nanocharacterization and nanometrology of high-aspect-ratio structures and nanoscaled biological elements to be completed, and provides an alternative to commercial high aspect ratio AFM tips. Copyright © 2010 American Scientific Publishers. All rights reserved.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)497-501
    JournalJournal of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology
    Volume10
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010

    Keywords

    • Atomic force microscopy
    • Deep reactive ion etching
    • Focused ion beam lithography
    • High-aspect-ratio

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