Anomalies in thickness measurements of graphene and few layer graphite crystals by tapping mode atomic force microscopy

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Abstract

Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) in the tapping (intermittent contact) mode is a commonly used tool to measure the thickness of graphene and few layer graphene (FLG) flakes on silicon oxide surfaces. It is a convenient tool to quickly determine the thickness of individual FLG films. However, reports from literature show a large variation of the measured thickness of graphene layers. This paper is focused on the imaging mechanism of tapping mode AFM (TAFM) when measuring graphene and FLG thickness, and we show that at certain measurement parameters significant deviations can be introduced in the measured thickness of FLG flakes. An increase of as much as 1 nm can be observed in the measured height of FLG crystallites, when using an improperly chosen range of free amplitude values of the tapping cantilever. We present comparative Raman spectroscopy and TAFM measurements on selected single and multilayer graphene films, based on which we suggest ways to correctly measure graphene and FLG thickness using TAFM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1435-1442
Number of pages8
JournalCarbon
Volume46
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2008

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Thickness measurement
Graphite
Graphene
Atomic force microscopy
Crystals
Silicon oxides
Crystallites
Raman spectroscopy
Multilayers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Chemistry

Cite this

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title = "Anomalies in thickness measurements of graphene and few layer graphite crystals by tapping mode atomic force microscopy",
abstract = "Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) in the tapping (intermittent contact) mode is a commonly used tool to measure the thickness of graphene and few layer graphene (FLG) flakes on silicon oxide surfaces. It is a convenient tool to quickly determine the thickness of individual FLG films. However, reports from literature show a large variation of the measured thickness of graphene layers. This paper is focused on the imaging mechanism of tapping mode AFM (TAFM) when measuring graphene and FLG thickness, and we show that at certain measurement parameters significant deviations can be introduced in the measured thickness of FLG flakes. An increase of as much as 1 nm can be observed in the measured height of FLG crystallites, when using an improperly chosen range of free amplitude values of the tapping cantilever. We present comparative Raman spectroscopy and TAFM measurements on selected single and multilayer graphene films, based on which we suggest ways to correctly measure graphene and FLG thickness using TAFM.",
author = "P. Nemes-Incze and Z. Osv{\'a}th and K. Kamar{\'a}s and L. B{\'i}r{\'o}",
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AU - Nemes-Incze, P.

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AU - Bíró, L.

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N2 - Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) in the tapping (intermittent contact) mode is a commonly used tool to measure the thickness of graphene and few layer graphene (FLG) flakes on silicon oxide surfaces. It is a convenient tool to quickly determine the thickness of individual FLG films. However, reports from literature show a large variation of the measured thickness of graphene layers. This paper is focused on the imaging mechanism of tapping mode AFM (TAFM) when measuring graphene and FLG thickness, and we show that at certain measurement parameters significant deviations can be introduced in the measured thickness of FLG flakes. An increase of as much as 1 nm can be observed in the measured height of FLG crystallites, when using an improperly chosen range of free amplitude values of the tapping cantilever. We present comparative Raman spectroscopy and TAFM measurements on selected single and multilayer graphene films, based on which we suggest ways to correctly measure graphene and FLG thickness using TAFM.

AB - Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) in the tapping (intermittent contact) mode is a commonly used tool to measure the thickness of graphene and few layer graphene (FLG) flakes on silicon oxide surfaces. It is a convenient tool to quickly determine the thickness of individual FLG films. However, reports from literature show a large variation of the measured thickness of graphene layers. This paper is focused on the imaging mechanism of tapping mode AFM (TAFM) when measuring graphene and FLG thickness, and we show that at certain measurement parameters significant deviations can be introduced in the measured thickness of FLG flakes. An increase of as much as 1 nm can be observed in the measured height of FLG crystallites, when using an improperly chosen range of free amplitude values of the tapping cantilever. We present comparative Raman spectroscopy and TAFM measurements on selected single and multilayer graphene films, based on which we suggest ways to correctly measure graphene and FLG thickness using TAFM.

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