Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Australian Overturns 15 Years Of Nano-science Doctrine

Date:
March 10, 2003
Source:
University Of Melbourne
Summary:
An Australian mathematician has thrown 15 years of accepted scientific practice out the window by discovering a design flaw in a key component of the Atomic Force Microscope. His finding will force a rethink into the design and use of an instrument that has become a cornerstone of scientific measurement and analysis.

An Australian mathematician has thrown 15 years of accepted scientific practice out the window by discovering a design flaw in a key component of the Atomic Force Microscope.

His finding will force a rethink into the design and use of an instrument that has become a cornerstone of scientific measurement and analysis.

Dr John Sader, at University of Melbourne's Department of Mathematics and Statistics, and Particulate Fluids Processing Centre, used established mechanical principles to prove that the popular V-shaped cantilever inadvertently degrades the performance of the instrument, and delivers none of its intended benefits.

Sader's research will be published in the April issue of Review of Scientific Instruments.

In atomic force microscopy, small cantilevers are used to profile surface topography and structure. Shortly after the invention of the Atomic Force Microscope (AFM), almost two decades ago, V-shaped cantilevers were introduced to minimise the effect of lateral forces on image quality, a problem faced by the original rectangular design. Sader's research reveals that this attempt to rectify the lateral force problem was based on a false assumption.

Instead of increasing the resistance to twisting, V-shaped microcantilevers actually maximise twist and degrade the performance of the instrument.

"This finding is surprising and counterintuitive, contradicting accepted practice and manufacturing standards worldwide where the V-shaped cantilever is the standard due to its alleged advantages," says Sader.

Users of the atomic force microscope have long put up with the geometric complexity of the V-shaped microcantilever, with resulting difficulties in calibration and interpretation, to gain improved lateral performance.

Sader's calculations establish that the simple cantilever design of a straight beam proposed for the original atomic force microscope (Physical Review Letters, 1986) offers greatly improved performance over the V-shape while facilitating calibration and measurement interpretation.

This finding has the potential to revolutionise the industry by setting a single universal standard and improving the performance of the instrument, while greatly simplifying its operation.

"Although the V-shape certainly offers strength and stability in the construction industry, its misuse has had a detrimental effect in the field of nano-science," says Sader.

###

Atomic Force Microscopy

The Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) has been the instrument of choice for three dimensional measurements at the atomic scale, since its invention in 1986.

The all-important cantilevers are placed in light contact with a sample and moved across its surface, detecting any change in surface topography. Cantilever calibration is a fundamental issue in the use of the instrument. There are several techniques in existence. Sader has devised one of these techniques, which is used commercially and by researchers worldwide.

The AFM is ideal for studies such as cell biology, polymer materials, biomaterials, materials science, food science, colloids, surfactants and coatings. The AFM is also capable of operation in liquids, a necessity for examining cells, tissues and other biological specimens immersed in liquid.

Measurements made from AFMs have revolutionised the way scientists quantitatively observe and think about the chemical, biological and physical world.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Melbourne. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Melbourne. "Australian Overturns 15 Years Of Nano-science Doctrine." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 March 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030310071230.htm>.
University Of Melbourne. (2003, March 10). Australian Overturns 15 Years Of Nano-science Doctrine. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030310071230.htm
University Of Melbourne. "Australian Overturns 15 Years Of Nano-science Doctrine." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030310071230.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

US Police Put Body Cameras to the Test

US Police Put Body Cameras to the Test

AFP (Oct. 1, 2014) Police body cameras are gradually being rolled out across the US, with interest surging after the fatal police shooting in August of an unarmed black teenager. Duration: 02:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Argentina's Tax Evaders Detected, Hunted Down by Drones

Argentina's Tax Evaders Detected, Hunted Down by Drones

AFP (Sep. 30, 2014) Argentina doesn't only have Lionel Messi the footballer, it has now also acquired "Mesi" the drone system which monitors undeclared mansions, swimming pools and soy fields to curb tax evasion in the country. Duration: 01:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) More and more studies are showing positive benefits to playing video games, but the jury is still out on brain training programs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 29, 2014) CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, celebrates 60 years of bringing nations together through science. As Joanna Partridge reports from inside the famous science centre it's also planning to turn the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator back on after an upgrade. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins