This paper presents characterization of heated atomic force microscope (AFM) cantilevers in air and helium, both at atmospheric pressure and in a partially evacuated environment. The cantilevers are made of doped single-crystal silicon using a standard silicon-on-insulator cantilever fabrication process. The electrical measurements show the link between the cantilever temperature-dependant electrical characteristics, electrical resistive heating, and thermal properties of the heated AFM cantilever and its surroundings. Laser Raman thermometry measures temperature along the cantilever with resolution near 1 μm and 4°C. By modulating the gaseous environment surrounding the cantilever, it is possible to estimate the microscale thermal coupling between the cantilever and its environment. This work seeks to improve the calibration and design of heated AFM cantilevers.

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