Piezo-Resistive Sensing Active (PRSA) probes are silicon cantilevers with an integrated piezo-resistor and a thermal actuator for self-sensing and self-actuating scanning probe microscopy applications. The piezo-resistors are integrated into a matched Wheatstone bridge to optimize the sensitivity and compensate environmental thermal drift By using the self-sensing readout no laser adjustment is necessary in comparison to conventional optical readout AFM systems. This gains time during a cantilever change. Furthermore free space above the cantilever opens a door for new applications and various instrument combinations.
The cantilever provides a sharp tip for accurate measurements in various applications. The cantilever chip is bonded onto a small printed circuit board with a small connector. The loading process of a fragile cantilever equipped with a connector is more easy and save. The counterpart PCB of the cantilever PCB is connected to a low-noise amplifier by a flat-flex-cable.