Departmental Papers (MEAM)

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

May 2002


Copyright (2002) American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics. Reprinted in Journal of Physical Review Letters, Volume 88, Issue 22, Article 226103, May 2002, 4 pages.

NOTE: At the time of publication, author Robert W. Carpick was affiliated with the University of Wisconsin. Currently (June 2007), he is a faculty member in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics at the University of Pennsylvania.
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Phase contrast in intermittent-contact atomic force microscopy (AFM) reveals in-plane structural and mechanical properties of polymer monolayers. This is surprising, because measurements of nanoscale in-plane properties typically require contact mode microscopies. Our measurements are possible because the tip oscillates not just perpendicular but also parallel to the sample surface along the long axis of the cantilever. This lateral tip displacement is virtually universal in AFM, implying that any oscillating-tip AFM technique is sensitive to in-plane material properties.



Date Posted: 25 June 2007

This document has been peer reviewed.