AFM Enclosure for NIST Surface and Nanostructure Metrology Group

iE was contacted by Bruker-Nano to provide an Enclosure for a unique Atomic Force Microscope. This special AFM was designed for the Traceable Scanning Probe Nano Characterization project created by NIST’s Surface and Nanostructure Metrology Group. Building on iE’s previous experience with PGL, iE designed a custom Enclosure that provides better than 0.01 ºC temperature stability (± 3mK) at the AFM head allowing for extremely precise measurements by the AFM. The enclosure has removable insulated panels for ease of access and assembly. The Environmental Control Unit (ECU) composing of a fan impellor with an external motor, a TEHE (Thermal Electric Heat Exchanger) combined with a pump and coils, and onboard electronics was designed to fit within the envelope of the Enclosure and provide precisely controlled air to the process chamber below. CFD analysis was used to develop an airflow scheme that allowed for maximum temperature stability at the AFM head. An external control box with a GUI (Graphical User Interface) is provided for monitoring and adjusting the Enclosures performance. Along with facilities chilled water the GUI is attached to the onboard ECU.