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Title: High-stability cryogenic scanning tunneling microscope based on a closed-cycle cryostat

We report on the design and operation of a cryogenic ultra-high vacuum (UHV) scanning tunneling microscope (STM) coupled to a closed-cycle cryostat (CCC). The STM is thermally linked to the CCC through helium exchange gas confined inside a volume enclosed by highly flexible rubber bellows. The STM is thus mechanically decoupled from the CCC, which results in a significant reduction of the mechanical noise transferred from the CCC to the STM. Noise analysis of the tunneling current shows current fluctuations up to 4% of the total current, which translates into tip-sample distance variations of up to 1.5 picometers. This noise level is sufficiently low for atomic-resolution imaging of a wide variety of surfaces. To demonstrate this, atomic-resolution images of Au(111) and NaCl(100)/Au(111) surfaces, as well as of carbon nanotubes deposited on Au(111), were obtained. Thermal drift analysis showed that under optimized conditions, the lateral stability of the STM scanner can be as low as 0.18 Å/h. Scanning Tunneling Spectroscopy measurements based on the lock-in technique were also carried out, and showed no detectable presence of noise from the closed-cycle cryostat. Using this cooling approach, temperatures as low as 16 K at the STM scanner have been achieved, with the completemore » cool-down of the system typically taking up to 12 h. These results demonstrate that the constructed CCC-coupled STM is a highly stable instrument capable of highly detailed spectroscopic investigations of materials and surfaces at the atomic scale.« less
Authors:
; ; ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, 1253 University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon 97403 (United States)
  2. RHK Technology, Inc., 1050 East Maple Road, Troy, Michigan 48083 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22306222
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Review of Scientific Instruments; Journal Volume: 85; Journal Issue: 10; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY; CARBON NANOTUBES; COOLING; CRYOSTATS; CURRENTS; FLUCTUATIONS; GOLD; HELIUM; IMAGES; NOISE; PRESSURE RANGE MICRO PA; RESOLUTION; SCANNING TUNNELING MICROSCOPY; SODIUM CHLORIDES; SPECTROSCOPY