Jump to main content
Jump to site search
Access to RSC content Close the message box

Continue to access RSC content when you are not at your institution. Follow our step-by-step guide.

Issue 16, 2016
Previous Article Next Article

AFM-based mechanical characterization of single nanofibres

Author affiliations


Nanofibres are found in a broad variety of hierarchical biological systems as fundamental structural units, and nanofibrillar components are playing an increasing role in the development of advanced functional materials. Accurate determination of the mechanical properties of single nanofibres is thus of great interest, yet measurement of these properties is challenging due to the intricate specimen handling and the exceptional force and deformation resolution that is required. The atomic force microscope (AFM) has emerged as an effective, reliable tool in the investigation of nanofibrillar mechanics, with the three most popular approaches—AFM-based tensile testing, three-point deformation testing, and nanoindentation—proving preferable to conventional tensile testing in many (but not all) cases. Here, we review the capabilities and limitations of each of these methods and give a comprehensive overview of the recent advances in this field.

Graphical abstract: AFM-based mechanical characterization of single nanofibres

Back to tab navigation

Article information

30 Jan 2016
28 Mar 2016
First published
08 Apr 2016

Nanoscale, 2016,8, 8414-8426
Article type
Review Article

AFM-based mechanical characterization of single nanofibres

B. R. Neugirg, S. R. Koebley, H. C. Schniepp and A. Fery, Nanoscale, 2016, 8, 8414
DOI: 10.1039/C6NR00863A

Social activity

Search articles by author