Many forms of scanning probe microscopy require a piezoelectric actuator to vary the probe-sample distance. Examples include constant-force atomic force microscopy and constant-current scanning tunneling microscopy. In such modes, the topography of the sample is reconstructed from the voltage applied to the vertical piezoelectric actuator. However, piezoelectric actuators exhibit significant hysteresis which can produce up to 14% uncertainty in the reproduced topography. In this work, a charge drive is used to linearize the vertical piezoelectric actuator which reduces the error from 14% to 0.65%.
Review of Scientific Instruments Vol. 81, Issue 10, p. 103701-1-103701-4