Clarion University of Pennsylvania, Clarion, PA 16214 USA.
Dr. Vasudeva Rao Aravind, Ph.D
Clarion University of Pennsylvania
Clarion, PA 16214USA
Nanodiamonds are being used in many areas of application due to their extraordinary chemical, physical, mechanical and tribological properties. They show promise for a large number of future applications in bio-medicine as tissue scaffolds and surgical implants, to name a few. The practical applicability of nanodiamonds is, however, limited by their tendency to disperse as agglomerates rather than single particles, when dispersed in a solvent. In this article, we show that Peakforce Tapping Atomic Force Microscopy can be used as a useful tool in studying and articulating quantitatively, the energetics of nanodiamond agglomeration. In a representative scan, we show that deformation of the probe-sample system can be used as a high resolution tool to articulate nanodiamond agglomeration and the inter-particle nanodiamond forces. The deformation image shows a variation of 921 picometers; a large variation across different areas of the nanodiamond sample. We show that the dissipation factor, while not showing high resolution between agglomerated and single particle nanodiamonds, can be used to qualitatively corroborate interaction forces with dissipation image.