Damage of STM tips during nanofabrication

Authors

  • N. Yokoi,

    1. Faculty of Engineering Science and Research Center for Extreme Materials, Osaka University, Toyonaka, Osaka 560, Japan
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  • S. Namba,

    1. Faculty of Engineering, Nagasaki Institute of Applied Science, Aba, Nagasaki 851–01, Japan
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  • M. Takai

    Corresponding author
    1. Faculty of Engineering Science and Research Center for Extreme Materials, Osaka University, Toyonaka, Osaka 560, Japan
    • Faculty of Engineering Science and Research Center for Extreme Materials, Osaka University, Toyonaka, Osaka 560, Japan
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Abstract

The STM tip shape was found to change when nanofabrication using a scanning tunnelling microscope (STM) was attempted by applying voltage pulses between the tip and the sample. This change, which is considered to be caused by the voltage pulses, was studied systematically to investigate the thermal contribution to nanofabrication using STM tips. The tips become easily damaged as the pulse amplitude and pulse width increase or the tunnelling gap decreases. Thermal reaction, including thermochemical reaction, is considered to play an important role in such nanofabrication.

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