Scanning Thermal Microscopy (SThM)

The resolution of AFM coupled with quantitative thermal analysis

Thermal methods, such as differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), thermomechanical analysis (TMA), and dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), are well-established techniques for characterizing the transition temperature of materials. However, a serious limitation of conventional thermal methods is that they give only a sample-averaged response and cannot provide information on localized defects, nor can they give the thermal properties of coatings/films less than a few microns in thickness.

The Scanning Thermal Microscopy (SThM) VITA module enables high-resolution thermal characterization capabilities on existing Bruker scanning probe microscopes (SPMs). With SThM-VITA, users can determine, with nanoscale spatial resolution and correlated topographical information, the local thermal properties of a material.


Thermal map of a data storage sample.