Fabrication and Detection Method for Attachment of CNTs to Nanoprobes
Original Publication Date: 2002-Aug-13
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2002-Aug-13
A self-monitoring method for the assembly of carbon nanotube (CNT) probes in a timely fashion exploits the software and piezo precision of a commercially available atomic force microscope (AFM) and eliminates problems associated with laborious mechanical approaches. A standard metal-coated silicon cantilever is brought into close proximity to vertically aligned chemical vapor deposited (CVD) grown CNT material, and by using the system's internal bias source, a voltage step is applied between the probe and CNT sample in two steps to attach the CNT to the probe. Detection of CNT probe attachment utilizes the built-in resonant tuning and force measurement capabilities of the AFM and thus eliminates the need for any subsequent electron beam inspection. With this technique we have been able to affix CNTs of widely varying dimensions with remarkably high yield and robustness. We suspect that metal particles (from the growth catalysis) that are incorporated inside the CNT aid in forming a eutectic bonding weld during the voltage pulse.