Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) is a high resolution technique to measure the topography of samples. However, in order for such measurements to be accurate, the AFM must be calibrated, so that the results can be trusted. The commercial materials listed here are suitable for making such calibrations of AFM instruments.
This information on AFM standards is extracted from my forthcoming book "Atomic Force Microscopy".
Please get in touch if any information is inaccurate or you know of another standard or supplier.

See appendix B of Atomic Force Microscopy for calibration procedures.

 

X-Y Standards

These are standards to calibrate or check linearity in the X-Y axis in SPMs.

Source

Standard

VLSI standards

www.vlsistandards.com

many in µm range (silicon, 2D) 100 to 1000 nm (silicon, 1D)

Ted Pella

www.tedpella.com

144 nm (aluminium on Silicon)

300 nm (titanium on silicon)

MikroMasch

www.spmtips.com

3 and 10 µm, HOPG

SPI Supplies

www.2spi.com

300 or 700 nm (metal-coated silicon)

Electron Microscopy Sciences

www.emsdiasum.com

300 or 700 nm (metal-coated silicon)

Applied NanoStructures

www.appnano.com

Various in micrometer range (metal-coated silicon). I personally tried use these standards.

Veeco

www.veecoprobes.com

1, 2, 10, 15 µm (silicon)

NT-MDT

www.ntmdt-tips.com

278 nm (aluminium on glass, 1D)

3 µm (silicon, 2D)

Asylum Research

www.asylumresearch.com

10 and 20 µm pitch (metal on silicon)

Nanosensors

www.nanosensors.com

100, 200 or 300 nm (silicon)

4, 8 and 16 µm (silicon

BudgetSensors

budgetsensors.com

500 nm, 5 and 10 µm - SiO2 on silicon.

Team Nanotech

www.team-nanotech.de

Pitch and feature width standards

Geller Micro

gellermicro.com

Geller sell references and standards (including traceable ones), suitable for AFM as well as EM.

Z standards

Here are standards to calibrate the z scale. Sometimes these can be the same ones as used for the x-y axis calibration, but often they are separate samples.

Source

Z calibration standard

VLSI standards

www.vlsistandards.com

various silicon and quartz

MikroMasch

www.spmtips.com

Various in silicon, HOPG

NTT AT

www.ntt-at.com

Silicon monatomic steps (0.31 nm)

Ted Pella

www.tedpella.com

20, 100 and 500nm (Silicon)

Applied NanoStructures

www.appnano.com

10nm, 1µm

BudgetSensors

budgetsensors.com

10, 100 and 500 nm steps - SiO2 on silicon

Veeco

www.veecoprobes.com

2, 100, or 200 nm (silicon)

NT-MDT

www.ntmdt-tips.com

Various steps in silicon and atomic steps in Silicon (0.31 nm)

Asylum Research

www.asylumresearch.com

200 nm (metal on silicon)

Nanosensors

www.nanosensors.com

8nm (silicon)

Silios Technologies

www.silios.com

2, 5 and 10 nm (silicon)

1 nm "in development"

Other standard materials include ultraflat samples - mica and HOPG, available from various suppliers, and quartz ultraflat sample from nanosensors.

Particle Standards

Particle samples are also useful both to calibrate the tip and as height references.

Supplier

Particle sample

Tedpella

www.tedpella.com

Gold colloids in 5, 15, or 15 nm diameter

Edmund Optics

www.thermo.com

Polystyrene nanospheres in a range from 20 to 900 nm

Evident Technology

www.evidenttech.com

Quantum dots ranging from 2.2 to 5.8 nm

Electron Microscopy Sciences

www.emsdiasum.com

Colliodal gold in 0.8 to 25 nm diameter

LFM Standards

Samples for calibrating LFM , with fixed angle slopes are:

Supplier

LFM sample

Mikromasch

www.spmtips.com

Triangles (silicon), top angle 70 °

Steps with sloped edges (silicon), slopes 54 °

Edmund Optics

www.edmundoptics.com

Ruled diffraction gratings, with various angles

Phase References

Samples for calibrating phase are available from Asylum Research and EMS. Both are polymer samples with regions of different hardness.

 

Probe Shape Calibration Samples

These are samples you can image with the AFM in order to get an in situ measurement of the radius and shape of the probe tip.

Supplier

Sample

Aurora NanoDevices

www.aurorand.com

Tip check sample (100 nm z-scale). Nioprobe tipcheck sample ( 10 nm z scale)

Mikromasch

www.spmtips.com

Porous aluminium

NT-MDT

www.nt-mdt.com

Silicon spikes

BudgetSensors

budgetsensors.com

Thin film on silicon wafer, with sharp pyramidal spikes. I have used this sample, and it can be used in contact or oscillating modes to characterise probe tip shape.

Feel free to get in touch with any updates / corrections.