Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) is one of the most powerful tools used in nanotechnology. It is playing a major role in advancing our understanding of material properties with implications in different research fields, from materials science and electronics to biotechnology and life science. The number and sophistication of the SPM methods has increased sharply by combining SPM with other characterization methods; by the development of specialized cantilever probes; by improving the theoretical models; by the use of faster and more powerful control systems; and through the implementation of multifrequency detection approaches that allow multiple types of measurements to be performed in a single-pass scan. The various techniques are applicable in a variety of environmental conditions –liquid, gas, low-pressure or vacuum– thus offering unprecedented capabilities for the development and characterization of new materials. Remarkably, those methods enable us to control chemical reactions and other nanoscale processes in their natural environment. Advanced Scanning Probe methods are expected to sustain our understanding of material properties at the atomic, molecular and nanoscale levels, with implications in energy storage, sustainability, medicine and communications.
The objective of this symposium is to bring together leading international probe microscopists who are conducting their research at the forefront of their respective disciplines, in order to discuss the application of novel techniques to existing and emerging problems in materials science, as well as to critically evaluate future steps and possibilities to improve SPM techniques.
Based on the extremely successful SPM-based symposia at previous MRS meetings, strong international and interdisciplinary participation is expected from academia, government and industry (including equipment manufacturers and industrial researchers), and from multiple research fields –materials science, engineering, condensed matter physics and biophysics– as well as from students engaged in SPM-related research or in the development of SPM itself.