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Atomic force microscopy for two-dimensional materials: A tutorial review

Zhang, Hang and Huang, Junxiang and Wang, Yongwei and Liu, Rui and Huai, Xiulan and Jiang, Jingjing and Anfuso, Chantelle (2018) Atomic force microscopy for two-dimensional materials: A tutorial review. Optics Communications, 406 . pp. 3-17. ISSN 0030-4018. doi:10.1016/j.optcom.2017.05.015.

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Low dimensional materials exhibit distinct properties compared to their bulk counterparts. A plethora of examples have been demonstrated in two-dimensional (2-D) materials, including graphene and transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs). These novel and intriguing properties at the nano-, molecular- and even monatomic scales have triggered tremendous interest and research, from fundamental studies to practical applications and even device fabrication. The unique behaviors of 2-D materials result from the special structure–property relationships that exist between surface topographical variations and mechanical responses, electronic structures, optical characteristics, and electrochemical properties. These relationships are generally convoluted and sensitive to ambient and external perturbations. Characterizing these systems thus requires techniques capable of providing multidimensional information under controlled environments, such as atomic force microscopy (AFM). Today, AFM plays a key role in exploring the basic principles underlying the functionality of 2-D materials. In this tutorial review, we provide a brief introduction to some of the unique properties of 2-D materials, followed by a summary of the basic principles of AFM and the various AFM modes most appropriate for studying these systems. Following that, we will focus on five important properties of 2-D materials and their characterization in more detail, including recent literature examples. These properties include nanomechanics, nanoelectromechanics, nanoelectrics, nanospectroscopy, and nanoelectrochemistry.

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Additional Information:© 2017 Elsevier B.V. Received 28 March 2017, Accepted 10 May 2017, Available online 22 June 2017. H.Z., Y.W, and X.H. thank financial support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51376177 and No. 51476173), CAS Pioneer Hundred Talents Program and Technology Foundation for Selected Overseas Chinese Scholar, Ministry of Personnel of China. We thank Dr. Z. Huang and Dr. M. Wagner from Bruker for their general help on preparing this paper.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
National Natural Science Foundation of China51376177
National Natural Science Foundation of China51476173
Chinese Academy of SciencesUNSPECIFIED
Technology Foundation for Selected Overseas Chinese ScholarUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:AFM; 2-D materials; Nanomechanics; Nanoelectrics; PeakForce SECM
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20170628-090135327
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Official Citation:Hang Zhang, Junxiang Huang, Yongwei Wang, Rui Liu, Xiulan Huai, Jingjing Jiang, Chantelle Anfuso, Atomic force microscopy for two-dimensional materials: A tutorial review, In Optics Communications, Volume 406, 2018, Pages 3-17, ISSN 0030-4018, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:78635
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:28 Jun 2017 16:23
Last Modified:01 Jun 2023 22:40

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