Agilent Technologies Inc. introduced the first commercially available capacitance calibration standard for an Atomic Force Microscope (AFM). The scientific solutions provider issued calibration specifications for capacitance measurements that allow quantitative assessment of material and device properties via its award-winning Scanning Microwave Microscopy Mode. Researchers from Agilent collaborated with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST Boulder Laboratories) to establish the new standard.

Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) Based Scanning Microwave MicroscopyScanning Microwave Microscopy (SMM) Mode is the only AFM-based electrical characterization technique that affords researchers true calibrated capacitance, said Jeff Jones, operations manager for Agilent’s nanoinstrumentation facility in Chandler, Ariz. “This quantitative information is critical to better understand the response and behavior of nanoscale systems, especially when device properties have to be assessed at their intended operation frequencies.”

Scanning Microwave Microscopy (SMM)
Mode is a unique method that uses an Agilent microwave vector network analyzer in concert with an Agilent 5420 or 5600LS AFM to measure properties associated with small variations in the electromagnetic interactions of a sample’s components with the incident microwave signal, statically or dynamically. The Agilent-exclusive technique can be used for measurement on semiconductors (no oxide layer required), metals, dielectric materials, ferroelectric materials, insulators and biological materials. Data from representative samples demonstrate that SMM Mode is capable of mapping material properties at a resolution ultimately limited by the sharpness of the Atomic Force Microscope probe.

Agilent offers high-precision, modular Atomic Force Microscope solutions for research, industry and education. Experienced application scientists and technical service personnel provide worldwide support. Agilent’s leading-edge R&D laboratories are dedicated to the timely introduction and optimization of innovative and easy-to-use Atomic Force Microscope technologies.