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Optical visualization of ultrathin mica flakes on semitransparent gold substrates

Aurora Dols-Perez12, Xavier Sisquella34, Laura Fumagalli12 and Gabriel Gomila12*

Author affiliations

1 Nanobioelec Group, Institute for BioEngineering of Catalonia (IBEC), c/Baldiri i Reixac 15-21, Barcelona 08028, Spain

2 Departament d’Electrònica, Universitat de Barcelona, c/Martí i Franquès 1, Barcelona 08028, Spain

3 Nanotechnology Platform, Barcelona Science Park, c/Josep Samitier 1-5, Barcelona 08028, Spain

4 Current address: The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, Parkville, Melbourne 3052, Australia

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Citation and License

Nanoscale Research Letters 2013, 8:305  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-8-305

Published: 2 July 2013


We show that optical visualization of ultrathin mica flakes on metallic substrates is viable using semitransparent gold as substrates. This enables to easily localize mica flakes and rapidly estimate their thickness directly on gold substrates by conventional optical reflection microscopy. We experimentally demonstrate it by comparing optical images with atomic force microscopy images of mica flakes on semitransparent gold. Present results open the possibility for simple and rapid characterization of thin mica flakes as well as other thin sheets directly on metallic substrates.

Ultrathin layers; Optical microscopy; Conductive AFM; Metallic substrate