Future Prospects

W. Richard Bowen, Nidal Hilal

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The use of atomic force microscopy (AFM) has made substantial contributions to understanding and improving processes across a wide range of engineering. The literature on such applications is very extensive, so the aim of this study is on some key examples. The importance of AFM lies in its capability of providing a better understanding of materials' structure, surface characteristics, and the interactive forces at the meso and nanoscale level. This greatly helps in understanding large-scale engineering processes, especially as materials are increasingly being designed down to the submicrometer level. AFM, with its proven capability for nanoscale measurements of bimolecular interactions, and physical and mechanical properties of materials, is expected to continue to make invaluable contributions to cell biology and biotechnology fields. The integration of AFM and optical techniques for simultaneous interrogation of biochemical functionalities with physical/mechanical properties of a cell offers huge benefits and is likely to attract increasing research efforts. Most importantly, the future prospects of all applications of AFM in process engineering will be greatly enhanced by increased collaboration between engineers, physical scientists, biological scientists, mathematicians, and instrument manufacturers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAtomic Force Microscopy in Process Engineering
Subtitle of host publicationAn Introduction to AFM for Improved Processes and Products
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9780080949574
ISBN (Print)9781856175173
StatePublished - Aug 20 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering
  • General Chemical Engineering


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