Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM) Service

Creative Biostructure offers professional scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) technology with state-of-the-art instrumentation, which is applied for imaging surfaces at the atomic level resolution. STM is the ancestor of all atomic force microscopes (AFM). The operation of STM and conductive AFM is identical, except that a sharpened and conducting wire/tip, instead of a conductive AFM cantilever, is used in STM.

STM measures the topography of surface electronic states using a tunneling current that is dependent on the separation between the probe tip and a sample surface. STM is typically performed on conductive and semiconductive surfaces. Common applications consist of atomic resolution imaging, Scanning Electrochemical Potential Microscopy (SECPM), and low current imaging of less conductive samples.

Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM) ServiceFigure 1. Schematic view of an STM.

Applications of the STM in Technology and Biology

When the resolution capabilities of the STM became evident, the possibility of examining biological structure in such detail was obvious and exciting. Although much of the excitement arose from the STM's ability to image objects at the atomic and molecular scale, the STM also emerges as a singular device for mapping and measuring three-dimensional surface profiles of objects in the range from 0.01 to 10 µm.

  • To understand and improve the manufacture of vertical recording thin-film magnetic recording heads
  • To provide quality control and guide the improvement of manufacturing procedures of industrial technology
  • To extend the scanning range of microscopes and incorporate x-y translation stages to help locate and identify features of interest
  • To further develop scanning probe microscopes designed to image soft nonconductors
  • To find ways to anchor biological samples, make them mechanically stable, and control their orientation and distribution
  • To learn to recognize target features among populations by use of reliable markers
  • To avoid artifacts caused by preparative methods

If you are interested in our scanning tunneling (STM) service, please do not hesitate to contact us for more information.


  1. C. Bai (2000). Scanning tunneling microscopy and its applications. New York: Springer Verlag. ISBN 978-3-540-65715-6.
  2. SPECS. STM 150 Aarhus - High Stability Temperature Control. Retrieved 23 February 2017.
For research use only. Not intended for diagnostic, therapeutic or any clinical use.

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