Pittcon Instrument Roundup
The size and price of atomic force microscopes (AFMs) appear to be on a downward trend. NanoMagnetics Instruments introduced the palm-size ezAFM with one or more of four operational capabilities—tapping, contact, friction, and magnetic modes—for $15,000 to $24,000. AFMs have traditionally been much larger and much more expensive. Nevertheless, the noise level of the ezAFM “is better than most of the research-grade AFMs available today,” the company says. “Cantilever exchange is aided through the use of commercially available self-aligning cantilevers. Detector and laser alignment is factory preset and will never require adjustment.” The instrument’s small footprint saves bench space, and only a simple and inexpensive vibration isolation apparatus is required to stabilize the device, the company notes. What’s next? An ezParticleAccelerator?