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Instrumentation pour la Métrologie des Transferts d'Energie Thermique aux Nanoéchelles – NanoMétrETher

Submission summary

NanoMétrETher project comes in the scope of the recent opening of a new research thematic on Micro and Nanoscales Heat Transfer in CETHIL aiming to display promising and emerging activities of young researchers. As transversal operation inside the MNSHT group, it represents the opportunity to reinforce budding synergies between the actions 'Scanning Thermal Microscopy' and 'Micro and Nano Scales Modelling' of CETHIL,. Progress in fabrication process and in nanofabrication techniques (electronic lithography, focus ion beam technique, …) permitted these last years the designing of thermal SPM probes equipped with thermocouple junctions of some ten nm in size. Since 1986, works of American, Japanese, English, Scottish and German groups have attested of the vitality of research for the development of the technique at the international level. In France, the thermal microprobe developed by Dinwiddie et al. in 1994 has mainly been used. Progress in the discipline has to be done. However what is measured with a nanothermal probe? Although the heat transfer mechanisms between a probe and a sample have only been studied in some depth, the thermal interactions and their dependence on tip geometry, surface chemistry, and other factors are still not well accurately known due to the lack of sensitivity and accuracy of the used probes and to the too simplified modeling used to characterise the very nanosensor and its surrounding. In order to response to this fundamental question, NanoMétrETher project aims to study the in-depth impact of heat at nanoscale on electrical phenomena used to measure temperature by contact at macroscopic scale by AFM-based technique; this to be able to define and fabricate the first prototype of an innovative and well thermally, electrically and mechanically designed nanosensor for Scanning thermal microscopy. For that purpose, the project is separated in three main distinguished parts concerning the development of: 1. A new AFM nanosensor using an electrical conductive nanowire as tip. This involves the elaboration of a specific nanowire used as heat nanoguide and its integration to a self heated AFM cantilever. 2. Experimental in depth studies of the contact potential between the nanotip and self heated samples with an AFM implemented with electrical modes and able to operate under controlled surrounding conditions (high vacuum, humid gas…) so that accurate tip-sample interaction study is possible. 3. Theoretical studies of the nanosensor thermal properties and of the thermal interaction at the contact interface nanoprobe / surface for the estimation of the effective contact temperature. In a parallel direction, a more prospective work will concern the elaboration, functionalisation and optimisation of a new nanocable structure used as accurate flow of energy nanosensor. The work will be achieved by means of three interrelated tasks designed specially to the set-up implementation, analysis from measurements and modelling: Task 1: Fabrication, structural, chemical and mechanical characterizations of sensors. This task should be finished before the end of the third year of the project. Task 2: Measurements to characterise the thermal near field interaction at the nanoscale. In addition of the implementation of the required AFM-based bench, numerous measurement campaigns will be performed in this task. Its duration will then concern the four years of the project. Task 3: Theoretical prediction of the response of the nanosensors. Tools such as Molecular Dynamics, ab initio calculi will be used and developed to deeply study and to predict the thermal behaviour of the nanostructured objects used, during the first two years of the project. The development of a predictive modelling of measurement will then permit the analysis of experimental data until the end of the project. Led in the framework of the activities of the Platform Nanowires and Nanotubes which joins LMI, LPMCN and CETHIL and of the CLAMS of INSA-Lyon, the project will beneficiate of high quality research collaborations from microfabrication, physics and chemistry domains. This project will provide researchers with a new opportunity to probe thermal phenomena at nanoscales and with a better understanding about heat transport in near field and at nanoscale contact. The complementary experiment and modeling approaches will pave the way for the development of innovative prediction tools and characterisation techniques, notably for heat transport phenomena problems in nanostructures, in nanostructured materials and at the interfaces of solid materials. In addition, it must be emphasized that thermal measurements at sub-30 nm scales are incontestably needed to understand the operating principle and the failure mechanisms of nanocomponents (reliability, lifetime) such as in microelectronics for example. Finally, we may expect to find interesting applications for designed SThM nanosensor in more long term.

Project coordination

Séverine GOMES (Organisme de recherche)

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


Help of the ANR 170,000 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: - 48 Months

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