Investigation of the dynamics of coupled cantilever arrays on a micro and macro scale with applications to AFM
Since the invention of atomic force microscopy (AFM) researchers have been trying to increase imaging speed. One method is to bring multiple cantilever probes together in close proximity to form an array. By using each probe independently, multiple points on a sample can be imaged simultaneously. AFM arrays have been developed and produced by the Rangelow research group under the PRONANO project at Technische Universität Ilmenau . These arrays are fabricated from multi-layer silicon beams and have bimetallic heater actuators and piezo-resistive sensors incorporated into each probe, allowing for individual actuation and sensing (Figure 1). Due to the close proximity of the cantilevers, the system response exhibits coupling phenomena (mechanical, electrical, thermal and fluidic). The way this coupling affects the dynamics of each beam and the system as a whole is not fully understood.