Tag Archives: contact mode

Kelvin probe force microscopy work function characterization of transition metal oxide crystals under ongoing reduction and oxidation

Controlling the work function of transition metal oxides is of key importance with regard to future energy production and storage. As the majority of applications involve the use of heterostructures, the most suitable characterization technique is Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM), which provides excellent energetic and lateral resolution.*

In their study “Kelvin probe force microscopy work function characterization of transition metal oxide crystals under ongoing reduction and oxidation» Dominik Wrana, Karol Cieślik, Wojciech Belza, Christian Rodenbücher, Krzysztof Szot and Franciszek Krok present the advantages and limitations of the FM-KPFM technique using the example of a newly discovered TiO/SrTiO3(100) (metal/insulator) heterostructure, which has potentially high technological relevance.*

In the same article a combined conductivity and work function study from the same surface area is presented, showing the possibility of obtaining full information on the electronic properties when the KPFM technique is accompanied by local conductivity atomic force microscopy (LC-AFM).*

The authos present the measurement of the crystalline TiO work function and its dependence on the gaseous pressure of air using Kelvin probe force microscopy.

In order to ensure reproducible FM-KPFM results, two different types of AFM cantilevers were used: NANOSENSORS™ PointProbe® Plus PPP-ContPt (PtIr-coated) and NANOSENSORS™ Platinum Silicide PtSi-FM.*

Such cantilevers are widely used as conducting tips in a contact mode AFM, allowing for a high lateral resolution in conductivity measurements. The remarkable mechanical stability of the selected cantilevers allowed for the noncontact mode measurements (with a Kelvin loop) using the very same tip, maintaining oscillations at the higher harmonics of the fundamental frequency (≈75 kHz). Hence, in order to record current and CPD maps from the very same sample area, KPFM measurements were first performed with the soft cantilever forced to oscillate at higher harmonics, then the tip was retracted tens of nanometers from the surface, all feedback loops were turned down and a contact mode AFM scan was performed when approached with a single loop maintaining a deflection set point of 10–30 mV. The high conductivity of both TiO and STO materials enabled a low sample bias of +1 mV for the LC-AFM measurements to be used.*

Figure 4 from “Kelvin probe force microscopy work function characterization of transition metal oxide crystals under ongoing reduction and oxidation”: KPFM lateral resolution on high TiO/STO structures. a) Topography and b) work function of TiO nanowire array on SrTiO3(100). c) Height (black line) and work function (green line) profiles of two adjacent TiO nanowires, showing high KPFM contrast. d) Dependence of the CPD resolution (estimated as ΔCPD/CPD, see c) on the separation between TiO nanowires, with A + B/X asymptote fit. Insets show the SEM images of the actual PtSi cantilever used in the experiments with a tip radius of 15 nm.

*Dominik Wrana, Karol Cieślik, Wojciech Belza, Christian Rodenbücher, Krzysztof Szot, Franciszek Krok
Kelvin probe force microscopy work function characterization of transition metal oxide crystals under ongoing reduction and oxidation
Beilstein Journal of Nanotechnology 2019, 10, 1596–1607
DOI: 10.3762/bjnano.10.155

Please follow this external link to read the full article: https://www.beilstein-journals.org/bjnano/articles/10/155

Open Access The article “Kelvin probe force microscopy work function characterization of transition metal oxide crystals under ongoing reduction and oxidation” by Dominik Wrana, Karol Cieślik, Wojciech Belza, Christian Rodenbücher, Krzysztof Szot and Franciszek Krok is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

Single layer graphene induces load-bearing molecular layering at the hexadecane-steel interface

Carbon-based layers play an important role in boundary lubrication, from graphite as commercial solid lubricant in a spray can over diamond-like carbon coatings in automotive industries all the way to graphitic layers found in metal-metal hip implants. With increasing availability of graphene, the two-dimensional building block of graphite, its possible role in lubrication is being explored. *

After the discovery of friction and wear reduction on steel surfaces by graphene in a variety of environments, graphene is now emerging as new lubricant. Polymer composites with graphene exhibit improved tribological properties due to wear reduction by efficient transfer layers. The composite approach has been successfully extended to multilayers of polymer and graphene. The use of graphene as additive in formulated lubricant oils is also promising after functionalization to improve solubility. *

In their letter “Single layer graphene induces load-bearing molecular layering at the hexadecane-steel interface” G. Krämer, C. Kim, K-S. Kim and R. Bennewitz report experimental results for fundamental lubrication properties of the interface between a hexadecane model lubricant and a steel surface modified by a single layer graphene. Using high-resolution force microscopy, they quantify that the reduction of friction on graphene is connected to an ordered layer of adsorbed hexadecane molecules and that the graphene induces an ordering in molecular layers in the confined liquid above graphene patches. *

A single layer of graphene on steel surfaces causes a change in the near-surface structure of the model lubricant hexadecane. Hexadecane adsorbs in an ordered layer aligned straight molecules, and this layer is stable under scanning in contact with the tip of an atomic force microscope, while no such layer is observed on the steel substrate. Graphene and hexadecane layer reduce friction at the nanoscale by a factor of three compared to the bare steel in hexadecane. *

All AFM measurements described in this letter were performed using a NANOSENSORS™ PointProbe® Plus PPP-CONTR AFM probe at room temperature with a home-built fluid cell where the cantilever was fully immersed in hexadecane.*

 Figure 3 from “Single layer graphene induces load-bearing molecular layering at the hexadecane-steel interface” by G Krämer et al.:
 High-resolution lateral force maps recorded in hexadecane with a normal force of 3 nN. (a) On graphene, the adsorbed hexadecane molecules arrange in form of lamellae with a width of 2.1 nm. The cross-section was taken along the line indicated. The schematic depiction of the orientation of one hexadecane molecule is informed by the results in [21]. (b) On the steel substrate, an irregular stick-slip pattern with a characteristic slip length of about 1 nm is observed. The two cross-sections are taken the along the lines indicated in the respective color.
Figure 3 from “Single layer graphene induces load-bearing molecular layering at the hexadecane-steel interface” by G Krämer et al.:
High-resolution lateral force maps recorded in hexadecane with a normal force of 3 nN. (a) On graphene, the adsorbed hexadecane molecules arrange in form of lamellae with a width of 2.1 nm. The cross-section was taken along the line indicated. The schematic depiction of the orientation of one hexadecane molecule is informed by the results in [21]. (b) On the steel substrate, an irregular stick-slip pattern with a characteristic slip length of about 1 nm is observed. The two cross-sections are taken the along the lines indicated in the respective color.

*G. Krämer, C. Kim, K-S. Kim and R. Bennewitz
Single layer graphene induces load-bearing molecular layering at the hexadecane-steel interface
Nanotechnology, Volume 30, Number 46, 2019, 46LT01
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1088/1361-6528/ab3cab

Please follow this external link to read the full article: https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1361-6528/ab3cab

Open Access: The letter “Single layer graphene induces load-bearing molecular layering at the hexadecane-steel interface” by G Krämer, C Kim, K-S Kim and R Bennewitz is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/.

Nucleation in confinement generates long-range repulsion between rough calcite surfaces

Fluid-induced alteration of rocks and mineral-based materials often starts at confined mineral interfaces where nm-thick water films can persist even at high overburden pressures and at low vapor pressures. These films enable transport of reactants and affect forces acting between mineral surfaces. However, the feedback between the surface forces and reactivity of confined solids is not fully understood.*

In “Nucleation in confinement generates long-range repulsion between rough calcite surfaces» Joanna Dziadkowiec, Bahareh Zareeipolgardani, Dag Kristian Dysthe and Anja Røyne describe how they used the surface forces apparatus (SFA) to follow surface reactivity in confinement and measure nm-range forces between two rough calcite surfaces in NaCl, CaCl2, or MgCl2 solutions with ionic strength of 0.01, 0.1 or 1 M.*

Roughness evolution with time of single, unconfined calcite films in salt solutions was analyzed by Atomic Force Microscopy using NANOSENSORS™ uniqprobe qp-SCONT AFM probes to image the surfaces in contact mode.*

 Supplementary Information S8. showing the Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)ALD films roughness characterization from «Nucleation in confinement generates long-range repulsion between rough calcite surfaces” by Joanna Dziadkowiec et al.:
 Figure S7 show the AFM height maps (A, B, E, F, G, J) and histograms of surface heights (C, D, H, I) of the initial set 1 (A-E) and set 2 (F-J) ALD calcite surfaces for two scan sizes of 15x15 μm2(A, C, F, H)and 2x2 μm2(B, D, E, G, I, J). The images E and J show 3D height maps of the B, G height maps, respectively

Supplementary Information S8. Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)ALD films roughness characterization from «Nucleation in confinement generates long-range repulsion between rough calcite surfaces” by Joanna Dziadkowiec et al.:
Figure S7.AFM height maps (A, B, E, F, G, J) and histograms of surface heights (C, D, H, I) of the initial set 1 (A-E) and set 2 (F-J) ALD calcite surfaces for two scan sizes of 15×15 μm2(A, C, F, H)and 2×2 μm2(B, D, E, G, I, J). The images E and J show 3D height maps of the B, G height maps, respectively

*Joanna Dziadkowiec, Bahareh Zareeipolgardani, Dag Kristian Dysthe and Anja Røyne
Nucleation in confinement generates long-range repulsion between rough calcite surfaces
Nature, Scientific Reports, volume 9, Article number: 8948 (2019)
doi: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-45163-6

Please follow this external link for the full article: https://rdcu.be/bMhZb

Open Access: The article “Nucleation in confinement generates long-range repulsion between rough calcite surfaces” by Joanna Dziadkowiec, Bahareh Zareeipolgardani, Dag Kristian Dysthe and Anja Røyne is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/