Scanning tunneling microscopy

Scanning tunneling microscopy

This simulation shows the basic principle of the scanning tunneling microscopy (STM). The STM operates on the mechanism of quantum tunneling. A tip is used to scan a surface of a sample. When it moves around, a bias voltage is applied. The tunneling current from the tip to the sample depends on the structure of the surface. An image created from the current reveals the surface structure.

The above image is just an animation made from the real model. Click the above button or this link to launch this interactive simulation.

System requirements: You must have Java Version 5 or higher in order to run this program. Please go to to get the latest Java software, if you are not sure.
Failed? Check out the FAQ for troubleshooting.

Get other models

Powered by the Molecular Workbench software.
Copyright 2009, Concord Consortium.