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Advanced Materials

Kinetics and Mechanism of Atomic Force Microscope Local Oxidation on Hydrogen-Passivated Silicon in Inert Organic Solvents


  • The authors acknowledge support from the Nanoscale Science and Engineering Initiative of the National Science Foundation under NSF Award Numbers EEC-0118025 and DMR-0134706, the Army Research Office Young Investigator Program under ARO Award Number W911NF-05-1-0177, and the Northwestern University Institute for Bionanotechnology in Medicine. One of the authors (C. R. K.) acknowledges funding from a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship and an NSF Graduate Fellowship. Another author (M. C. H.) acknowledges an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship.


Conductive atomic force microscope (AFM) nanopatterning on hydrogen-terminated silicon in a hydrophobic organic solvent under ambient conditions produces features consistent with AFM field-induced oxidation. The growth rate of the oxide features (see figure) exhibits modulation consistent with a space-charge-limited growth mechanism.

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