Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) is gaining acceptance as a mainline failure analysis tool. Acceptance has come as the number of applications has multiplied. The serious analyst will find at his disposal a means of mapping minute changes in properties such as temperature, current, electric field, capacitance, resistance, voltage, and doping concentration. Each of these properties can be viewed in an image with resolution from microns to angstroms. Furthering its application the AFM is being used to probe sub-quarter micron nodes. The AFM’s intrinsic imaging and force control lend itself well to this job. However, traditional microscopes and probes are not well suited to the application. This paper describes the requirements and solutions to allow for nanometer probing applications.

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