Contact-free experimental determination of the static flexural spring constant of cantilever sensors using a microfluidic force tool

John David Parkin, Georg Hähner

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Abstract

Micro- and nanocantilevers are employed in atomic force microscopy (AFM) and in micro- and nanoelectromechanical systems (MEMS and NEMS) as sensing elements. They enable nanomechanical measurements, are essential for the characterization of nanomaterials, and form an integral part of many nanoscale devices. Despite the fact that numerous methods described in the literature
can be applied to determine the static flexural spring constant of micro- and nanocantilever sensors, experimental techniques that do not require contact between the sensor and a surface at some point during the calibration process are still the exception rather than the rule. We describe a noncontact method using a microfluidic force tool that produces accurate forces and demonstrate
that this, in combination with a thermal noise spectrum, can provide the static flexural spring constant for cantilever sensors of different geometric shapes over a wide range of spring constant values (≈0.8–160 N/m).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)492-500
JournalBeilstein Journal of Nanotechnology
Volume7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30 Mar 2016

Keywords

  • AFM
  • Cantilever sensors
  • Microfluidic force tool
  • Spring constant

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