Nanofabrication with atomic force microscopy

Qian Tang, San-Qiang Shi, Li Min Zhou

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

59 Citations (Scopus)


Atomic force microscopy (AFM) was developed in 1986. It is an important and versatile surface technique, and is used in many research fields. In this review, we have summarized the methods and applications of AFM, with emphasis on nanofabrication. AFM is capable of visualizing surface properties at high spatial resolution and determining biomolecular interaction as well as fabricating nanostructures. Recently, AFM-based nanotechnologies such as nanomanipulation, force lithography, nanografting, nanooxidation and dip-pen nanolithography were developed rapidly. AFM tip (typical radius ranged from several nanometers to tens of nanometers) is used to modify the sample surface, either physically or chemically, at nanometer scale. Nanopatterns composed of semiconductors, metal, biomolecules, polymers, etc., were constructed with various AFM-based nanotechnologies, thus making AFM a promising technique for nanofabrication. AFM-based nanotechnologies have potential applications in nanoelectronics, bioanalysis, biosensors, actuators and high-density data storage devices.
Original languageEnglish
Article number016
Pages (from-to)948-963
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2004


  • Atomic Force Microscopy
  • Dip-pen Nanolithography
  • Force Lithography
  • Nanofabrication
  • Nanografting
  • Nanomanipulation
  • Nanooxidation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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