A pEek on the lab

czech metrology institute (Czech Republic)

Contacts: Miroslav VALTR, mvaltr@cmi.cz

Web-site: http://www.nanometrologie.cz/en/



The Czech Metrology Institute (CMI) is the National Metrology Institute of the Czech Republic. CMI provides uniformity and precision of measuring instruments and measurement in all the fields of research, technical and economic activities in the range of Law about metrology. The institute provides services in all basic fields of metrology:

fundamental metrology - maintenance and development of national standards, research and development in metrology,

transfer of units - calibration of standards and measuring instruments,

legal metrology - type approvals of legal metrology instruments, initial and subsequent verification of measuring instruments, metrological supervision, conformity assessment in metrology.

Since 1998, the Department of Nanometrology has focused on the development of scanning probe microscopy metrology and related methods. This includes providing traceability for scanning probe microscopy methods (metrology SPM), developing methods for quantitative analysis of different physical quantities with nanometre resolution and numerical analysis. The main effort of the Department is equally distributed between scientific projects, instrumentation development and publication activities.



Metrology SPM is based on Physik Instrumente XYZ stage and a frequency stabilized Nd:YAG laser six-axis interferometer built in cooperation with the Institute of Scientific Instruments, CAS. The system can be used for measurements up to 200 x 200 x 20 microns. AFM head is based on simple optical lever feedback, using home-built controller based on Red Pitaya board.


Long range SPM was originally designed for the measurement of micro- and nanoscale form, roughness and surface defects using AFM. It was subsequently modified for optical characterization to provide hybrid information on studied samples. It is based on a home-built 2D stage using air bearings. Position of the stage is measured by a two-axis interferometer. Lateral range of the stage can reach 5 x 5 cm.


This commercial SPM system can be used for routine measurements of many different physical properties. Scanning range is 80 x 80 x 10 microns. The most common operating modes are AFM (surface topography), SThM (thermal conductivity), MFM (magnetic properties) or PeakForce QNM (nanoscale mechanical characterization).



Petr Klapetek is head of Department of Nanometrology. He is working in the field of quantitative scanning probe microscopy (SPM) since 1999, including atomic force microscopy (AFM), scanning near-field optical microscopy (SNOM), scanning thermal microscopy (SThM) and other similar methods. He is one of the founders of open source software initiative for SPM data analysis Gwyddion (http://gwyddion.net) and the author of open source FDTD solver Gsvit (http://gsvit.net). He designed and constructed several specialized metrology systems for scanning probe microscopy (e.g. national standard for nanometrology) and is an author of >70 publications in the field of SPM, mechanical and optical measurements.

Miroslav Valtr

Miroslav Valtr received Ph.D. in physics in 2010 from Masaryk University in Brno. He is a permanent member of staff at CMI since 2007. He is focused on SPM measurements and SPM data processing. He is also participating on instrumentation development and electronics design and administrates supercomputing facilities at CMI.