Atomic Force Microscopy Webinars

Measuring Nanoscale Viscoelastic Properties with AFM-Based nano-DMA

AFM-nDMA mode provides viscoelastic results that can be directly compared with bulk DMA, while also allowing high-resolution microstructure measurements of heterogeneous samples.

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Learn New Ways of Measuring Viscoelasticity with AFM

In this webinar, Measuring Nanoscale Viscoelastic Properties with AFM-Based nano-DMA, the speakers introduce the polymer rheological measurement capabilities of the new AFM-nDMA mode. This mode for the first time provides viscoelastic measurements that match bulk dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) over the entire frequency range.

Watch to learn how AFM-nDMA mode overcomes the analytical challenges of established AFM methods in order to:

  • Provide viscoelastic results that can be directly compared with bulk DMA; and also
  • Allow high-resolution microstructure measurements of heterogeneous samples.

To illustrate these points, the speakers discuss a series of homogeneous polymer and composite examples.

Key Topics

Since the mechanical properties of polymers are time dependent, full understanding of their characteristics requires collecting measurements over a range of frequencies and temperatures.

Where DMA is well suited for measurements on bulk samples, it is less adept at characterizing microscopic domains within heterogeneous polymer material. Established AFM methods have similarly limited appropriateness for use in such research processes, as they either provide property maps at discrete frequencies orders of magnitude higher than bulk measurements (e.g., TappingMode and contact resonance) — making comparisons difficult — or struggle with such intrinsic mechanical properties as loss tangent and storage modulus (e.g., force spectroscopy and PeakForce Tapping).

 AFM-nDMA overcomes these hurdles.


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This webinar was presented on: March 20, 2019


Dalia Yablon, Ph.D.

Research Chemist, SurfaceChar LLC

Dalia Yablon is the founder of SurfaceChar, an AFM and nanoindentationbased measurement, consulting, and training company in the Greater Boston area since 2013. Dalia also serves as the senior advisor of TechConnect Ventures and Technical Chair of TechConnect World. In addition to editing a book on “SPM in Industrial Applications” (Wiley), Dalia’s research focuses on nanomechanical characterization methods and soft material characterization. She holds an A.B. in Chemistry from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from Columbia University.

Bede Pittenger, Ph.D., Sr. Staff Development Scientist, AFM Applications, Bruker Nano Surfaces


Dr. Bede Pittenger is a Senior Staff Development Scientist in the AFM Unit of Bruker's Nano Surfaces Business.  He received his PhD in Physics from the University of Washington (Seattle, WA) in 2000, but has worked with scanning probe microscopes for 25 years, building systems, developing techniques, and studying properties of materials at the nanoscale.  His work includes more than thirty publications and three patents on various techniques and applications of scanning probe microscopy.  Dr. Pittenger's interests span topics from interfacial melting of ice, to mechanobiology of cells and tissues, to the nanomechanics of polymers and composites.