Measuring the Mechanical Properties of Preformed, Nanometer-Size Gold Clusters with the Atomic Force Microscope
An atomic force microscope has been used in the attractive (noncontact) force mode to image individual nanometer-size Au clusters preformed in the gas phase and deposited on a wide variety of atomically flat substrates. Contact imaging modes are shown to provide sufficient lateral forces to dislodge the clusters. Using a noncontact technique, it is possible to reliably image preformed clusters in their as-deposited positions. This capability allows nanoindentation studies to measure the mechanical properties of individual nanometer-size Au clusters supported on highly oriented pyrolitic graphite and permits a measure of the deformation of a nanometer-size cluster as a function of the applied load.
KeywordsAtomic Force Microscope Flat Substrate Bulk Gold Nanoindentation Experiment Noncontact Mode
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