Temperature dependence of nanoscale friction investigated with thermal AFM probes Conference Paper uri icon


  • Measurements of nanoscale friction between silicon AFM tips featuring an in-situ solid state heater and silicon substrates (both with native oxide) were performed. The temperature of the heater was varied between room temperature and approximately 650°C. For these temperatures and the silicon substrate, the temperatures at the point of contact are estimated to range from room temperature to approximately 120±20°C. Experiments were carried out in ambient atmosphere (∼30% relative humidity) and under dry nitrogen. Tests under constant load revealed that in the presence of ambient, friction increased with heater temperature whereas it did not change in dry nitrogen. For experiments carried out for different tip velocities (40 to 7800 nm/s), friction decreased with velocity in ambient and did not change in dry nitrogen. Both trends can be explained by thermally-assisted formation of capillary bridges between tip and substrate and the kinetics of capillary condensation under ambient conditions. © 2010 Materials Research Society.

author list (cited authors)

  • Greiner, C., Felts, J. R., Dai, Z., King, W. P., & Carpick, R. W.

publication date

  • December 2010