High resolution imaging of biological materials using hydrophobic carbon nanotube AFM probes

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Carbon nanotube (CNT) tipped atomic force microscope (AFM) probes have shown a significant potential for obtaining high resolution imaging of nanostructure and biological materials. In this work, we report a simple method to fabricate single-walled carbon nanotube (SWNT) nano-probes for atomic force microscopy (AFM) using the Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) technique. Moreover, to obtain hydrophobic property of SWNT-AFM probes with a capability of high resolution imaging in atmospheric and high relative humidity conditions, the SWNT-AFM probe was modified through vapor deposition of trichloro[1H, 1H, 2H, 2H,-perfluorotyl]silane (FTOS). Using this FTOS-modified SWNT-AFM probe, a high resolution image of plasmid DNA standard sample was acquired. The measured dimension of plasmid DNA had a middle width of 4~5 nm (true width 2nm). We demonstrate that the FTOS-modified SWNT-AFM probes have extremely high resolution imaging capability, which allows to measure higher resolution images than with conventional AFM probe.

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Journal: TechConnect Briefs
Volume: 1, Nanotechnology 2010: Advanced Materials, CNTs, Particles, Films and Composites
Published: June 21, 2010
Pages: 67 - 70
Industry sector: Advanced Materials & Manufacturing
Topic: Materials Characterization & Imaging
ISBN: 978-1-4398-3401-5