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Title: Exploring Local Electrostatic Effects with Scanning Probe Microscopy: Implications for Piezoresponse Force Microscopy and Triboelectricity

The implementation of contact mode Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM) utilizes the electrostatic interactions between tip and sample when the tip and sample are in contact with each other. Surprisingly, the electrostatic forces in contact are large enough to be measured even with tips as stiff as 4.5 N/m. As for traditional non-contact KPFM, the signal depends strongly on electrical properties of the sample, such as the dielectric constant, and the tip-properties, such as the stiffness. Since the tip is in contact with the sample, bias-induced changes in the junction potential between tip and sample can be measured with higher lateral and temporal resolution compared to traditional non-contact KPFM. Significant and reproducible variations of tip-surface capacitance are observed and attributed to surface electrochemical phenomena. Lastly, observations of significant surface charge states at zero bias and strong hysteretic electromechanical responses at non-ferroelectric surface have significant implications for fields such as triboelectricity and piezoresponse force microscopy.
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  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Center for Nanophase Materials Science
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
ACS Nano
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 10; Journal ID: ISSN 1936-0851
American Chemical Society (ACS)
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
77 NANOSCIENCE AND NANOTECHNOLOGY; scanning probe microscopy; electrostatics; charge storage; HfO2; thin films