New iDrive Cantilever Holder from Asylum Research Allows Effortless Tuning for Imaging Soft Samples in Fluid

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iDrive Kit
iDrive Probes are Exclusively Available Through Asylum Research
Customer Upgrades


iDrive is a specially designed cantilever holder for imaging soft samples in fluid. It simplifies fluid imaging by eliminating the multitude of peaks due to mechanical coupling, and therefore, allows auto tuning of the cantilevers in fluid. It’s exclusively available for MFP-3D AFMs.

iDrive uses a patented technique to magnetically actuate the cantilever by driving a small current through the cantilever legs in the presence of a magnetic field (Fig. 1). Because it doesn’t use a piezo to oscillate the cantilever, mechanical coupling and multiple peaks when tuning the cantilever in fluid are eliminated (Fig. 2).

Fig: 1. Schematic diagram of the cantilever which shows the Lorentz Force exerted onto the cantilever.

Fig. 2, Cantilever tuned in fluid with piezo-driven AC Mode (top) and with iDrive AC Mode (bottom). Notice the single peak to which users can easily tune their cantilever. Red: Undriven thermal motion. Black: Driven motion.

Unlike other magnetic actuation techniques, iDrive doesn’t require extra controllers and sample holders which can add significant cost and consume valuable lab space. It also does not require magnetically coated cantilevers which can introduce undesirable cantilever bending, expose sample solutions to potentially harmful metal ions, and lose magnetic sensitivity due to corrosion in solution or oxidation over time. iDrive allows simplified auto tunes in fluid, application of Q-control in fluid and non-destructive imaging of sensitive samples, particularly soft biological and polymer samples. iDrive also allows for optical access to the sample from top and bottom.

The iDrive accessory includes a cantilever holder and iDrive compatible probes. The holder can be operated in either iDrive AC mode or standard piezo-driven AC mode which is easily switchable in the software. It is compatible with MFP-3D accessories including the Closed Fluid Cell and BioHeater.

iDrive Kit

Item Quantity
Proprietary iDrive cantilever holder 1
PEEK™ spring clip screws 3
Stainless steel spring clip screws 2
Slotted screwdriver 1
Philips screwdriver 1
AR-iDrive probes 105

iDrive Probes are Exclusively Available Through Asylum Research

Model # AR-iDrive
Tip/lever material SiN. Four levers total but two short cantilevers (one on each side) are iDrive compatible only.
Lever Shape Triangular
Lever Thickness 0.4£gm
Lever Width 13.4 (100µm)
27.9µm (200µm)
Lever Length 100µm (iDrive compatible)
Spring constant (N/nm) 0.09 (100µm) 0.02 (200µm)
Resonant freq. in air (kHz) 32 (100µm) 10 (200µm)
Tip shape 4-sided pyramid
Tip height 3µm
Tip radius <40nm
Tip angle <35° front
<35° side
Coating 40nm Au on tip side
50nm Au on reflex side
Packaging/Pricing 210 - $5,730
70 - $2,465
35 - $1,450
10 - $500

Customer Upgrades

Older MFP-3D systems require a small hardware retrofit to the controller for iDrive compatibility. This will be provided with the iDrive kit. For upgrade details, price quotations, or if you have multiple controllers that need the compatibility upgrade, please contact Asylum Research

Source: Asylum Research

For more information on this source please visit Asylum Research

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