The screencast on the soft, drift-reduced NANOSENSORS uniqprobe cantilevers for biology and life science applications held by Dr. Laure Aeschimann has just passed the 500 views mark.
Congratulations Dr. Aeschimann!
Often it is necessary to add a coating to an AFM cantilever. In most cases it is a reflex coating on the backside of the cantilever to enhance the reflection of the laser to get a sufficient signal into the AFM photodetector.
Unfortunately, adding a coating to a cantilever has several drawbacks such as:
a coating adds stress to the cantilever
when the cantilever is illuminated with the laser the so called Bimorph-Effect (if operating in liquids) will bend the cantilever and let the laser drift out of the photo-detector (thermal drift)
a higher damping of the cantilever which leads to a lower Q-factor
a higher noise of the cantilever
Those effects can be reduced dramatically when the coating is not done on the whole cantilever, but only on a part of it. The images above are showing cantilevers with a reflex coating covering about 20, 40, 65 and 100% of the cantilever.
To provide best quality with highest possible cantilever sensitivity NANOSENSORS™ manufactures their Uniqprobe® cantilever as the only AFM tip exclusively with a partial coating!