Beetle SPM – Variable Temperature UHV STM/AFM/SEM

  • Sample temperatures: from 25 K (LHe) to >1500 K
  • Inherent Mechanical and Thermal Stability
  • Straight forward laser optics for AFM
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Based on the field-proven “Johnny Walker” Beetle™ design, RHK’s VT Beetle is the most mechanically and thermally stable of the many variable temperature SPM designs on the market today.

Wide VT operation from 25 K (LHe) to 1500 K is coupled with easily aligned AFM enabling a full range of techniques from advanced NC-AFM to true quantitative friction force measurements.  The user can easily switch between STM and AFM in UHV, and exchange and store samples, tips, and probes in UHV.

The Beetle is available in a variety of configurations from kits for atmospheric operation to complete variable temperature systems. Specialized Beetle systems from RHK provide Variable Magnetic Fields, specialized Optical access for many optical beam studies, and SEM-guided probe positioning.  The Beetle can be integrated with RHK’s prep-analysis chambers for a multi-technique nanotech research platform whose performance and capabilities are unmatched.

Beetle AFM/STM systems are based on the traditional laser deflection – position sensitive detection (PSD) feedback design. This provides the full range of AFM acquisition modes including; Normal Force, Lateral Force, Non-Contact, Near Contact, Constant Height, CAFM, MFM, simultaneous AFM/STM, and more. The Beetle AFM includes standard commercial cantilever mounts and standard STM tip wire mounts with in vacuum storage and in-situ exchange for easy cantilever and/or tip exchange without breaking vacuum. The open exchange holders also provide for in-situ thermal and ion beam tip conditioning.

For STM flexible operating modes combined with our low noise, high bandwidth control electronics provide the user with an unparalleled performance STM system package. Our patented tip exchange system provides simple tip exchange along with in-situ tip conditioning on VT systems or with the optional tip heating module.

Measurements in a variable magnetic field are possible using RHK’s unique electromagnet design, delivering a reversible and continuously variable field up to 1 Tesla in plane with a sample size of 1 cm. No compromise is made in resolution, drift, stability, or vibration isolation. The field can be varied real-time while imaging without retracting the probe from the sample.

Finally for ultimate sample navigation the Beetle can be integrated with a Scanning Electron Microscope for swift SEM-guided probe placement in a wide field of view, integrated with uncompromised AFM/STM resolution. A fully integrated SEM onboard our renowned UHV AFM/STM together with best-of-breed analytical and preparation instruments thoughtfully configured and integrated across hardware, software, electrical, and control interfaces puts your Science on Target.


Beetle Quick Specifications

  • Coarse XY positioning at least 5 mm x 5 mm
  • Scan range of at least 5 micron x 5 micron XY
  • Minimum resolution of 0.5Å (X, Y) and 0.1Å (Z)
  • Thermal drift <1 Å/min
  • Sample temperatures: from 25 K (LHe) to >1500 K; or 100 K (LN2) to >1500 K
  • Sample size 10mm diameter

AFM Highlights

  • Straightforward laser path without mirrors or lenses
  • Intuitive orthogonal laser and PSD alignment
  • True quantitative friction force measurements

STM Highlights

  • Low Current Imaging – < 1pA at 5kHz bandwidth
  • High Speed Scanning – 3 sec/frame

VMF Highlights

  • Strong Field: Up to 1T magnetic field in sample plane
  • Options: Out of plane magnetic field available
  • Smart Design: Ex-vacuum convectional electromagnets require no cooling and provide continuously variable & reversible fields
  • No Compromise: In SPM resolution, drift, or stability
  • Visualization and spectroscopy of surface structures
  • Variable Temperature Studies
  • Magnetic Studies
Prep/Analysis Chamber Options

To complement all of RHK’s advanced UHV AFM/STM SPM systems, preparation and analysis equipment can be added and integrated to create complete and versatile surface science platforms.26_image-300×183

RHK SPMs are thoughtfully designed from the beginning for easy modular upgrades over time as funding permits and research evolves. Adding RHK prep-analysis chambers and instruments brings powerful new research capabilities to SPM systems and greatly increases overall functionality.

RHK tailors prep/analysis upgrades to individual user needs and preferences without restricting the choice to a particular brand of instrument. Instead, RHK works with several close industry partners to select specialized best-in-class instruments such as LEED, XPS, SEM, evaporators, and ion sources. Our approach assures the user’s requirements are met without compromise or trade-offs.

An RHK prep/analysis chamber is chosen to accommodate the selected instruments. The chamber can be one of several pre-designed configurations or completely customized for unique research objectives. Then these instruments and chamber are fully integrated with the SPM system, and the complete platform is thoroughly tested, delivered, and installed.

RHK can also install a prep-analysis chamber and instrument upgrade for an existing SPM system at the customer’s site, so the original system never has to leave the laboratory. In either case, the result is a complete system with seamless, turnkey operation, advanced functionality, and ongoing support.