Reduction of surface roughness of a silicon chip for advanced nanocalorimetry

Luigi La Spina*, Denis Ovchinnikov, Wim H.A. Wien, Alexander W. van Herwaarden, Egbert J.G. Goudena, Joachim Loos, Lis K. Nanver

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


A silicon chip designed to combine nanocalorimetry with scanning probe microscopy (SPM) has been realized. For the SPM application, as an additional requirement, a very low surface roughness of the scanned area becomes imperative. Several steps in the basic process flow are examined by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and modified in order to meet the surface roughness demands of a root mean square (rms) roughness below 1 nm as well as a negligible nanoparticle count. In particular, spin-on benzocyclobutene (BCB) layers are demonstrated to give a versatile means of achieving a surface that is smooth enough for calorimetry of nanometer-thin films while simultaneously allowing the investigation of nanometer scale morphological features by means of SPM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-409
Number of pages7
JournalSensors and actuators. A: Physical
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Atomic force microscopy
  • Benzocyclobutene
  • Nanocalorimetry
  • Roughness
  • Thin films


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