Seminar Series

A Nonlinear and Coupled Oscillator Approach to Overcome Current Issues of Scanning Probe Imaging and Lithographic Technologies


Dr Stefanie Gutschmidt


Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Canterbury

Time & Place

Fri, 30 Aug 2019 14:00:00 NZST in E14 (Lecture Theatre), Engineering CORE


Dynamic Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) is an imaging technology allowing for sub-nanometre spatial resolutions. Key advantages of this technology are that it does not require the preparation of samples and can be operated in any medium - vacuum, air, liquid alike. Thus, AFM is suitable for imaging a broad variety of samples, ranging from semiconductor products to living cells. Moreover, this technology is suitable for also obtaining sample properties such as mechanical stiffness, material composition, etc., and manipulate samples. Latter also includes scanning probe lithography for semiconductor fabrication. Future perspectives of AFM technology aim to establish processes such as real-time sensing of biological cell structures to detect cell topology and/or biomechanical cell characteristics. Establishing this technology requires a significant increase of both, sensitivity and process speed measures. However, with the current technology being based on linear vibration concepts there exists a trade-off between these two metrics - achieving high sensitivity measures goes along with compromising on the process speed and vice versa. Linear vibration approaches have caused current AFM technology to reach its performance limits. An improvement beyond current sensitivity and process speed limits can only be achieved by basing the technology on fundamentally different, indeed superior, vibration concepts. This work presents a few nonlinear vibration mechanisms as an avenue for increasing sensitivity measures beyond existing levels while also improving the overall process speed.

Mech Eng Seminar, Stefanie Gutschmidt