On the origin of amplitude reduction mechanism in tapping mode atomic force microscopy

Sasan Keyvani Janbahan, Hamed Sadeghian, Hans Goosen, Fred Van Keulen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
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The origin of amplitude reduction in Tapping Mode Atomic Force Microscopy (TM-AFM) is typically attributed to the shift in resonance frequency of the cantilever due to the nonlinear tip-sample interactions. In this paper, we present a different insight into the same problem which, besides explaining the amplitude reduction mechanism, provides a simple reasoning for the relationship between tip-sample interactions and operation parameters (amplitude and frequency). The proposed formulation, which attributes the amplitude reduction to an interference between the tip-sample and dither force, only deals with the linear part of the system; however, it fully agrees with experimental results and numerical solutions of the full nonlinear model of TM-AFM.

Original languageEnglish
Article number163104
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Continuum mechanics
  • Intermolecular forces
  • Newtonian mechanics
  • Atomic force microscopy
  • Fourier analysis
  • Nanopatterning
  • Nonlinear dynamics


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