Progress Towards a Cost-Effective Atomic Force Microscope
Work towards the design and construction of an atomic force microscope (AFM) is underway at Houghton College. In addition to yielding strong educational value, this device is intended to be used in the characterization of surface topography of thin metal films (such as Ag) and other solid state samples. Three separate “Johnny walker” designs have been designed and built, each design being informed by the previous ones. Though movement of any design has yet to be observed, the design and construction of an improved high voltage (~ 1 kV, 500 hz) signal amplification system to drive the piezo-tube legs of the walker should improve the speed and reliability of future testing.
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