Scanning Thermal Microscopy
Scanning Thermal Microscopy (SThM) allows nanoscale temperature and heat flow measurements as well as thermal characterization of materials. This chapter focuses on fundamentals and applications of SThM methods. It reviews the main Scanning Probe Microscopy techniques developed for thermal imaging with nanoscale spatial resolution and presents selected SThM applications. After reviewing the fundamentals of thermal metrology by contact, it describes the approaches currently used to calibrate SThM probes. In many cases, the link between the nominal measured signal and the investigated parameter is not yet fully understood, due to the complexity of the micro-/nanoscale interaction between the probe and the sample. Special attention is given to this interaction, which conditions the tip–sample interface temperature. Some examples of the main applications of SThM are presented. Finally, future challenges and opportunities for SThM are discussed.