Nanosurf Flex-Axiom — AFM for materials research


  • Easy to use and high performance
  • High resolution and low-noise design
  • Advanced modes and unique accessories
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The most flexible and versatile atomic force microscope for materials research

Versatility, performance, and seamless application extensions

For success in Materials Research studies, scientists depend on professional tools that can readily provide the information needed, regardless of the tasks at hand. By advancing key technologies and designs, Nanosurf has made the Flex-Axiom one of the most versatile and flexible atomic force microscopes ever, allowing a large variety of materials research applications to be handled with ease. Together with the powerful C3000 controller, complex material characterizations are possible.

Key features and benefits

  • Easy to use and high performance
  • High resolution and low-noise design
  • Modes and accessories to handle all your research needs
  • Extremely modular to keep you productive
  • Upgradable for life science and operation on large stages

Used by hundreds of researchers for many applications

The Flex-Axiom is your reliable tool for topographical and metrological imaging of samples in both air and liquid. But the Flex-Axiom goes beyond topography, for example with advanced mechanical, electrical, or magnetic characterization. The system has also been successfully used for local sample manipulation.

Topography, KPFM, and MFM images of the same area of a stainless steel sample

The precision and performance you need for your research

The Flex-Axiom uses an extremely linear electromagnetic scanner for XY movement. This scanner delivers an average linearity deviation of less than 0.1% over the full scan range, top-ranking on the AFM market. The Z-axis is piezo-driven, with a position sensor that enables closed-loop operation. A sensitive cantilever detection system can measure well into the MHz frequency range. The scan head is connected to the full-featured, 24-bit C3000 controller with digital feedback and 2 dual-channel lock-in amplifiers.

Imaging of single and multiple pyrene nanosheets and height analysis with sub-nanometer accuracy. Data courtesy: Mykhailo Vybornyi, University of Berne, Switzerland

Modular design: get more for your money today and be prepared for changing needs in the future

With a modular stage concept and various possible cantilever holder types, the Flex-Axiom is ready for all your current and future needs. On the C3000 controller, 14 AFM operating modes have already been implemented, with more to follow, allowing highly advanced measurements and experiments in the field of materials research. The ECS 204 electrochemical stage, for example, provides electrochemical and environmental control over the sample and its surroundings, resulting in exciting new discoveries.

Together with some of our high-end research customers, custom solutions for large-area nano-lithography, operation in a glovebox, and magneto-resistive sensing have been developed.

Large-area nano-lithography (Dr. Lu Shin Wong, Manchester, UK)

Flex-Axiom in glove box (Dr. Philip Kim, Harvard University, US)

Magneto-resistive sensing (Dr. João Gaspar, Braga, PT)

The modular concept of the Flex-Axiom also allows easy upgrades to other products of the FlexAFM product line (Flex-Bio for life science, Flex-ANA for automatic nanomechanical analysis, and Flex-FPM for cell and nano-manipulation) to further extend the possibilities of your Flex-Axiom research system.

Practical details that really matter in daily use

The FlexAFM video option integrates two cameras for parallel top and side view, allowing you to quickly find an area of interest and to bring the cantilever close to the surface before the final, automatic approach.


Cantilever holders with alignment structures are available for use with cantilevers containing alignment grooves. This provides micrometer repositioning accuracy, circumventing laser alignment and allowing you to find the same sample features again and again, even when switching cantilevers during an experiment.

  • Materials Characterisation
  • SPM Research
Components and Accessories

Flex-Axiom components and accessories

At the heart of the Flex-Axiom system are the FlexAFM scan head and the C3000 controller with I100 interface box. On top of that, several options and accessories are available, designed to deliver stable and reliable results, or to provide access to new measurement possibilities and experiments:

  • Various cantilever holder types
  • FlexAFM video option with top and side view
  • ECS 204 electrochemical stage
  • ATS 204 motorized translation stage
  • Isostage for vibration-free measurements
  • Environmental control to work in a dry or low oxygen environment
  • Acoustic enclosure to protect the instrument against acoustic and other disturbances