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Tuesday, 19 February 2013 10:50

Human Fibroblast Imaging





AFM-NSOM Measurements of Healthy Human

Dermal Fibroblasts in Liquid

A demonstration of Nanonics' unique abilities in both biological and soft sample imaging.

The imaging of soft tissues, such as the live fibroblast cells shown below, leads the way to many new biological applications. The human dermal cells were imaged live in a PBS buffer (pH-7.3).  Below we see a chain of NSOM images obtained in transmission mode with a Nanonics patented cantilevered tip with  an aperture diameter of 100nm.



50 x 50 microns

30 x 30 microns

8 x 8 microns

These images illustrate  the abilities of Nanonics' MultiView systems to overcome the difficulties usually associated with viewing live, soft tissue liquid samples. These SPM systems permit easy viewing of liquid samples via a versatile and  user-friendly liquid cell attachment. The open architecture of Nanonics' SPM heads allows one to view samples from above and below. These systems are easily integrated into our dual microscope which combines both upright and inverted formats. This is particularly important for better resolution of low-contrast biological samples.

The free optical axes also allows fluorescence or Raman imaging to be accomplished with ease.

 Using the same system AFM was used for topographical mapping. The AFM was carried out in intermittent contact mode, as regular contact mode would have scratched the soft tissue. Nanonics systems are able to operate in all three SPM modes.



CCD sample image with NSOM probe approaching  the surface


Below we see the AFM images (left) and the corresponing (right) NSOM images.


                                              AFM images (left) NSOM images (right) 
                                                          done at 50 x 50 microns




Below is shown a line scan of simultaneously obtained topography and NSOM images. The AFM image is at the top and the NSOM image is at the bottom.





Human dermal fibroblasts are derived from the dermis of normal human skin and have been used for in vitro analyses of fibroblast growth, migration and collagen metabolism in wound healing. Fibroblasts are responsible for the homeostasis of connective tissues and their activity is modulated by several cells and soluble factors. SPM techniques using our MultiView systems were used as part of a study to investigate the factors that regulate the synthesis of the extracellular matrix molecules and the functional organization of these molecules in the extracellular space.








AFM/EFM imaging of graphene transistor. Height AFM image (upper left) and correlated Electrostatic Force Microscopy imaging performed with Nanonics Pt nanowire electrical probe (Upper right Image). The graphene is connected to two separate gold electrodes (upper right and lower left corners) which have been biased with 1.5v Lower Left Image is 3D presentation of the AFM image . Lower Right Image is AFM/EFM 3D collage presentation

AFM 2D Closeup EFM 2D closeup
AFM 2D Closeup AFM/EFM Collage



Performed with Nanonics unique ultrastable Nano-wire glass insulated electrical probe.


  • Ultrastable solid wire electrical probes q Ultra-Sensitive Tuning Fork Normal Force feedback
  • Geometrical friendly for online multiprobe all under active AFM feedback.
  • Low contact resistance and full insulation with glass upto the probe tip for high electro-potential resolution
  • Glass coating insulation can be overcoated with metal to emulate coax geometries for ultrahigh sensitivity electrical imaging
  • High cantilever design that minimizes cantilever electrical interference
Tuesday, 19 February 2013 07:00

Gold Line using NanoFountain Pen

Gold NanoParticle Lines Printed on a Microchip


Figure 1: SEM and AFM gold nanoparticles line printed on semiconductor surface. (a) SEM image shows the gold nanoparticles line printed by FPN. Scale bar is 5 microns. (b) AFM image of smaller area than in (a) shows the same printed line as in (a). (Taha, H. et al. Controlled Deposition of Gold Nanowires on Semiconducting and Nonconducting Surfaces Nano Letters Vol. 7, No. 7: 1883-1887)

Elemental Anaylsis of a Gold Line Written with the NanoFountain PenTM


 Figure 2: Gold nanoparticles line printed on semiconductor surface by FPN technique in close juxtaposition to a gold line produced by electron beam lithography technique. (a) AFM image shows the lines produced by electron beam lithography and the gold colloid line deposited by FPN on the right side of the image. Scale bar is 1.2 cm, (b) Zoom-in image of the marked area on (a) highlights the deposited line. Scale bar is 360 nm.(c) Height profile line between the marked arrows on (a) shows one of the electron beam lithography lines with width of 250 nm and height of 45 nm and the FPN deposited line 6 with width of 100 nm and height of 15 nm. (d) Electron-induced x-ray fluorescence spectrum of the FPN deposited line shows Au on the right peak. (Taha, H. et al. Controlled Deposition of Gold Nanowires on Semiconducting and Nonconducting Surfaces Nano Letters Vol. 7, No. 7: 1883-1887)


Comparison of Line Profiles of a Gold Line Written with The NanoFountain PenTM and a Gold Line Produced by Electron Beam Lithography


Elemental and I-V Characteristics of a Gold Line Written with The NanoFountain PenTM

EDS Measurement of the gold line  


I-V Characterization of the gold line:

The line slope shows Ohmic behavior with resistance of ~ 650 ohms.



I-V Characteristics of a Gold Line Written with The NanoFountain PenTM


FPN Gold colloids line deposited in the interconnection of a 100 nm separation of two conducting wires for current-voltage characterization (a) Optical image shows the inner electrodes pattern for the I-V characterization (x100 magnification). (b) Optical image of the inner electrodes area (x1000 magnification). (c) AFM image shows the inner electrodes pattern with a printed gold nanoparticles wire crossing a space of 100 nm between two electrodes. (Scale bar is 800 nm.) (d) Height line profile of the dashed line on (c) shows the gold nanoparticles 120 nm line on top of one electrode. (e) I-V characterization of the printed line shows an Ohmic behavior with resistance of ~4000 Ohm (y-axis in units of microamps). (Taha, H. et al. Controlled Deposition of Gold Nanowires on Semiconducting and Nonconducting Surfaces Nano Letters Vol. 7, No. 7: 1883-1887)

WSxM software has been used for image processing of the pictures above: I. Horcas et al. Rev. Sci. Instrum. 78, 013705 (2007).

Tuesday, 19 February 2013 06:55

HOPG Atomic Steps

HOPG Atomic Steps

All Nanonics systems show the ultimate of AFM imaging capability with the imaging of atomic steps in highly oriented pyrolytic graphite even on a dual microscope or on a microRaman.



AFM topographic image of 2x2 micron scan area shows atomic layer of Highly Ordered Pyrolytic Graphite [HOPG]. Height line profile (right) shows the different atomic layers at the marked line (left). The marked step at the graph shows a single atomic step of 3.75 Angstrom. Nanonics Systems allow for ultrahigh sensitive topographic imaging with minimal Z noise and single atomic layer imaging is a standard for all our systems.

WSxM software has been used for image processing of the pictures above: I. Horcas et al. Rev. Sci. Instrum. 78, 013705 (2007)


Tuesday, 19 February 2013 06:47

AFM/NSOM and Capacitance

SRAM AFM, NSOM and Capacitance Imaging
The first simultaneous NSOM/Capacitance ever to be produced.

10x10 micron AFM Topgraphy   NSOM Image of the same region

Only Nanonics Double Wire Electrodes can produce simultaneous NSOM/Capacitance measurements


These images were obtained by the MultiView 1000™
 Simultaneous Capacitance Image of the same region
Tuesday, 19 February 2013 06:44

Nano Pump Probe Optical Measurements

NanoPumpProbe Optical Measurements

 Apertured NSOM probe is used to launch a 532nm laser on gold strip for near-field plasmons excitation (shown in topography image at left) and zoomed in the middle image. The right image is an NSOM collection mode obtained with a second probe shows plasmons propagation on the gold strip.Multiview 4000TM system allows for multiprobe scan probe microscopy protocols for effective localized illumination of plasmonic structure with an apertured NSOM probe which produces all k-vectors and so it is most efficient for such plasmonic propagation. The propagating plasmons are collected with a second probe which has a very low dielectric constant and minimal perturbation of the plasmonic propagation.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013 06:13

Bacteriorhodopsin Containing Purple Membranes


AFM topographic image of Bilayer Bactriorhodpsin (BR) containing purple membranes stacked one on top of the other. Bar is 500nm.

The plot on the right is a line profile of the green bar showing a monolayer step of 4nm.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013 06:06


Lenses of <2 micron Focal Spots

Nanonics produces excellent lensed fiber products through its capability to characterize the structure and the light distribution with near-field optics.

  Nanonics 3D collage of AFM topography and collection mode NSOM of an integral fiber microlens.



Topography of the Micro Lens


The Light Distribution at the Surface of the Micro Lens



The Fiber Micro Lens Numerical Aperture


Given the radius of curvature from the AFM topography and the focal distance and size of the aperture of the micro lens and the diameter of the light distribution in the focal plane gives a N.A. of 0.26.


Nanonics systems today provide the best profiling of fiber lasers and ultrasmall lensed fibers in the near and far-fields.


Optical Sections of a Lensed Fiber

with Two Micron Separations



Collage of Topography and Light Distribution at Lens Surface



Monday, 18 February 2013 14:27

Strained Si Transistor

Strained Si Transistor

Opening up SPM to nanochemistry with controlled chemical delivery to or removal from regions as small as 20 nanometers.

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