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Rio Dell, CA, United States

A scanning probe microscope (SPM) system and associated method. The SPM system having a probe adapted to interact with nanoscale features of a sample and scan within a target region to produce a three-dimensional image of that target region, the system maintaining location information for a plurality of features of interest of the sample according to a sample-specific coordinate system, wherein the SPM system is configured to adjust positioning of the probe relative to the sample according to a SPM coordinate system, the SPM system further configured to manage a dynamic relationship between the sample-specific coordinate system and the SPM coordinate system by determining a set of alignment errors between the sample-specific coordinate system and the SPM coordinate system and apply corrections to the SPM coordinate system to offset the determined alignment errors.

Bruker Nano Inc. | Date: 2015-03-31

An apparatus and method of automatically determining an operating frequency of a scanning probe microscope such as an atomic force microscope (AFM) is shown. The operating frequency is not selected based on a peak of the amplitude response of the probe when swept over a range of frequencies; rather, the operating frequency is selected using only peak data corresponding to a TIDPS curve.

An apparatus and method of performing physical property measurements on a sample with a probe-based metrology instrument employing a nano-confined light source is provided. In one embodiment, an SPM probe tip is configured to support an appropriate receiving element so as to provide a nano-localized light source that is able to efficiently and locally excite the sample on the nanoscale. Preferably, the separation between the tip apex and the sample during spectroscopic measurements is maintained at less than 10 nm, for example, using an AFM TR Mode control scheme.

Methods and apparatuses are described for adaptively tracking a feature of a sample using a scanning probe microscope. The adaptive technique provides an adaptive method for tracking the feature scan-to-scan despite actual or apparent changes in feature shape due, for example, to an evolving/transitioning state of the sample, and/or actual or apparent changing position due, for example, to movement of the sample and/or drift of the piezoelectric tube actuator. In a preferred embodiment, each scan may be processed line-by-line, or subpart-by-subpart, and may be analyzed either in real time or off-line. This processing technique improves speed, processing, reaction, and display times.

Bruker Nano Inc. | Date: 2014-03-17

An apparatus and method of positioning a probe of an atomic force microscope (AFM) includes using a dual probe configuration in which two probes are fabricated with a single base, yet operate independently. Feedback control is based on interaction between the reference probe and surface, giving an indication of the location of the surface, with this control being modified based on the difference in tip heights of the two probes to allow the sensing probe to be positioned relative to the sample at a range less than 10 nm.

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