You are on page 1of 3


(PHYS 520-1)
Name: Luqman Saleem

Roll No. 21600778

Date: 30-Oct-2016
Paper titled as Surface Studies by Scanning Tunneling Microscopy
explained the most advanced technique of that time to study the
surface topographical data of elements at atomic level. In the
method inventors used vacuum tunneling of electrons from surface
to a specific part of the Microscope named as Tip. This
transportation was seen through a distance of approximately 10 A o
distance between surface and the tip, while this distance could be
stabilized between 0.2 Ao. The main factor that gives the topological
data of the surface was the distance between surface and the tip as
the tunneling current was proportion to this distance. This distance
was maintained by 3D piezoelectric crystals named as Piezodrives
(Px, Py and Pz). Moreover, in construction there was a Computer Unit
(CU) which provides appropriate potential to maintain Microscope for
constant tunneling current.
In this paper, there was a brief explanation regarding how to
construct tip of Microscope of required radius. One method
mentioned was to take a solid rod of 1mm diameter and then use
conventional gridding machine to sharp the tip, the other method
given was mini-spot-welding method to produce tip of very fine
One other view regarding usage of this microscope given was how to
relate the roughness of surface with the height of tip, on two
different points of given diagram there were difference in the height
of tip because of difference in work function of material on those
points. To sum up with it writer said if the work function of the
material is not same on the whole surface we can modulate gap
between tip and surface. The author gives 2 examples regarding
measurement of topographic surface properties of CaIrSn4 and Au.
CaIrSn4: This microscope is used to study (110) surface of flux-grown
crystals of CaIrSn4 at 10-6 torr vacuum and room temperature. The
data got form this experimental was matched with crystallographic
data by which average distance between planes is 6.87 A o. Crystals
showed spiral growth on the start that was also observed by electron
microscope. The piezodrives were used so that there was a capacitor
of sensitivity of 2.0 Ao/V attached with surface and tip to maintain
the distance.
Au: In this case, they developed tunnel unit with significant increase
in stability. First, they studied (110) surface that resulted into be
structure-less and flat at atomic level. Then, they sputter Ar and
annealed it at 600 oC and 10-10 torr vacuum that was observed to be
corrugation in direction of 001.
In summary writer tried to mention some advantages of this new
proposed Microscope i.e. STM gives 3D typographs at better
resolution than SEM. This method is nondestructive and can handle
high current densities of order 103 to 104 Acm-2