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Design of a Scanning Tunneling Microscope (STM)

  1. Hi, for my integration class I am building a scanning tunnelling microscope (STM). I found some interesting designs and I choose the cheapest one (students are poor) witch uses a unimorph disk. The mechanical approach of the microscope is fairly simple but I am sure it could be improve. I am no way near an engineer as I'm still in CEGEP (witch is grade 13 equivalent) so I need help and suggestions.

    Here is the design I am planning to reproduce: http://www.geocities.com/spm_stm/Mechanical_discription.html.
    Basically it's 2 aluminium plates with tree screws that control the height of the tip.

    So my questions are:
    Is aluminium good for this or is there other material better to reduce resonance.
    Would a design with two or four screws be easier to adjust height?
    Would it be easier to use motors to control the screws and if so how?
    To reduce vibration I plan to suspend the rig on springs and a heavy weight, is that going to be enough?
    Should I put the rig inside a glass shield to reduce air vibration?

    If you have any other suggestions don't be shy, I am opened to anything. Also don't be scared of being too technical, I will figure it out or read around to understand it.

    Thank you in advance.

    P.S. I will also post in the electrical engineering section and in quantum physics one for other questions. So if you are interested about other part or have a lot of knowledge on STM's you can go to the two other threads.
    Electrical engineering
    Quantum physics
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2006
  2. jcsd
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