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Nanotechnology. 2012 May 11;23(18):185501. doi: 10.1088/0957-4484/23/18/185501. Epub 2012 Apr 20.

High-speed multiresolution scanning probe microscopy based on Lissajous scan trajectories.

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  • 1IBM Research-Zurich, Säumerstrasse 4, 8803 Rüschlikon, Switzerland.


A novel scan trajectory for high-speed scanning probe microscopy is presented in which the probe follows a two-dimensional Lissajous pattern. The Lissajous pattern is generated by actuating the scanner with two single-tone harmonic waveforms of constant frequency and amplitude. Owing to the extremely narrow frequency spectrum, high imaging speeds can be achieved without exciting the unwanted resonant modes of the scanner and without increasing the sensitivity of the feedback loop to the measurement noise. The trajectory also enables rapid multiresolution imaging, providing a preview of the scanned area in a fraction of the overall scan time. We present a procedure for tuning the spatial and the temporal resolution of Lissajous trajectories and show experimental results obtained on a custom-built atomic force microscope (AFM). Real-time AFM imaging with a frame rate of 1 frame s⁻¹ is demonstrated.

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