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Nano & Pico Characterization Lab

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Adam Stieg, Director
Shivani Sharma, Associate Director

The Nano & Pico Characterization Laboratory provides both state-of-the-art microscopic techniques to visualize surfaces, adsorbates, nanostructures and devices at the atomic and molecular scale as well as a unique opportunity for researchers to gain insight into local properties under a wide range of experimental conditions.

Scanned Probe Microscopies (SPM) systems rely upon a unique tactile sensing of surfaces using a sharp, mechanical probe. SPM systems operate in a diverse range of environments, including temperatures and pressures ranging from the extreme vacuum of space (UHV) to atmospheric and liquid environments. The diversity of operation has enabled nanoscale investigation of structural, mechanical, electrical and magnetic properties of surfaces and adsorbates.

Scanning Tunneling Microscopies (STM) permit the precise control of individual atoms and molecules in fabrication of nanostructures, currently representing the ultimate limit of fabrication.

Atomic Force Microscopies (AFM) rely upon sensing tiny forces between the tip and object in order to feel and visualize nanostructures.

These techniques are used regularly to investigate systems such as: single DNA strands, living cells, proteins, molecules and atoms.

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