The latest news from academia, regulators
research labs and other things of interest
Posted: Nov 01, 2011
Asylum Research Introduces VFM2 Variable Field Module for Magnetic Atomic Force Microscopy Applications With MFP-3D AFM
(Nanowerk News) Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force
microscopy, introduces the new Variable Field Module2 (VFM2) for the MFP-3D Atomic Force Microscopes (AFM).
The VFM2 is ideal for researchers who want to apply magnetic fields to their atomic force microscopy experiments and
applies continuously adjustable magnetic fields parallel to the sample plane approaching one Tesla with one Gauss
resolution. The module is useful for magnetic force microscopy (MFM), conductive AFM
(C-AFM), and other applications where the sample's properties are magnetic field dependent.
Five frames showing a piece of Perpendicular Media Recording (PMR) hard disk degaussed with an in-plane ~0.5 Tesla magnetic field using the VFM2.
The VFM2 easily attaches to the MFP-3D AFMs and features adjustable pole tips for optimal choice between maximum
required field, sample placement and minimum field gradients. The Module uses a unique design incorporating rare
earth magnets to produce the magnetic field. Maintaining a steady field produces no heat, thermal drift, or mechanical
vibration. Field intensity is software controllable. An integrated Gaussmeter provides a quantitative measure of the
applied magnetic field.
For experiments where combined magnetic field and a high tip-sample voltage bias are required, such as for studies of
ferroelectric and piezoelectric materials, the VFM2 High Voltage Kit can be easily attached to the VFM2. The High
Voltage Kit allows application of tip biases up to ±220V.
Commented Roger Proksch, President of Asylum Research, "Prior to the introduction of the VFM2, high magnetic field
measurements required complicated superconducting or water-cooled magnets, neither of which were particularly
friendly to low-noise, high precision AFM measurements. Our team, headed by Maarten Rutgers, has made a startling
increase in field strength along with increased measurement precision and ease of use. This is truly a major step
forward in ambient AFM."