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Micromachines 2015, 6(5), 600-610; doi:10.3390/mi6050600

Nano-Workbench: A Combined Hollow AFM Cantilever and Robotic Manipulator

Precision and Microsystems Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Mekelweg 2, 2628 CD Delft, The Netherlands
National Centre for HREM, Kavli Institute of Nanoscience Delft, Delft University of Technology, Lorentzweg 1, 2628 CJ Delft, The Netherlands
Korea Institute of Science and Technology, KIST Europe, Nano Magnetics group, Campus E7 1, 66123 Saarbrücken, Germany
This paper is an extended version of our paper published in the 2nd International Conference on Microfluidic Handling Systems, Freiburg, Germany, 8–10 October 2014.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Joost Lötters
Received: 6 March 2015 / Revised: 4 May 2015 / Accepted: 7 May 2015 / Published: 13 May 2015
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [7169 KB, uploaded 13 May 2015]   |  


To manipulate liquid matter at the nanometer scale, we have developed a robotic assembly equipped with a hollow atomic force microscope (AFM) cantilever that can handle femtolitre volumes of liquid. The assembly consists of four independent robots, each sugar cube sized with four degrees of freedom. All robots are placed on a single platform around the sample forming a nano-workbench (NWB). Each robot can travel the entire platform and has a minimum position resolution of 5 nm both in-plane and out-of-plane. The cantilever chip was glued to the robotic arm. Dispensing was done by the capillarity between the substrate and the cantilever tip, and was monitored visually through a microscope. To evaluate the performance of the NWB, we have performed three experiments: clamping of graphene with epoxy, mixing of femtolitre volume droplets to synthesize gold nanoparticles and accurately dispense electrolyte liquid for a nanobattery. View Full-Text
Keywords: nano-workbench; femtopipette; nanorobot; nanomanipulation; microfluidics; nanodispensing; hollow cantilever; atomic force microscope nano-workbench; femtopipette; nanorobot; nanomanipulation; microfluidics; nanodispensing; hollow cantilever; atomic force microscope

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Garza, H.H.P.; Ghatkesar, M.K.; Basak, S.; Löthman, P.; Staufer, U. Nano-Workbench: A Combined Hollow AFM Cantilever and Robotic Manipulator. Micromachines 2015, 6, 600-610.

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