CMOS and beyond CMOS
Discover why imec is the premier nanoelectronics R&D center in the development of industry-relevant solutions for advanced logic & memory devices.
Connected health solutions
Explore the technologies that will power tomorrow’s wearable, implantable, ingestible and non-contact devices.
Life sciences
As a pioneer in nanoelectronics, imec brings the power of chip technology to the world of healthcare.
Sensor solutions for IoT
Imec develops innovative solutions for sensor networks, high speed networks and sensor technologies for the Internet of Things.
Artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence is no longer the stuff of science fiction: its technologies are ready and its possibilities are real. It’s time to explore them, and imec is ready to help you.
More expertises
Discover all our expertises.
Be the first to reap the benefits of imec’s research by joining one of our programs or starting an exclusive bilateral collaboration.
Build on our expertise for the design, prototyping and low-volume manufacturing of your innovative nanotech components and products.
Use one of imec’s mature technologies for groundbreaking applications across a multitude of industries such as healthcare, agriculture and Industry 4.0.
Venturing and startups
Kick-start your business.Launch or expand your tech company by drawing on the funds and knowhow of imec’s ecosystem of tailored venturing support.
/Job opportunities/Understanding Sliding Contacts at the Nanoscale Using Scalpel-SPM

Understanding Sliding Contacts at the Nanoscale Using Scalpel-SPM

Master projects/internships - Leuven | More than two weeks ago

Explore microscopy on the nanometer scale

The recent development of scalpel-Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) has paved a path towards three-dimensional (3D) tomography for obtaining relevant (piezo-)electrical insight at nanoscale in 3 dimensions. This approach is a key enabler for probing novel 3D devices such as FinFETs and Nanowires. The basic principle of scalpel-SPM lies in the nanoscale tip-induced physical removal of the material where the rate of removal is controlled by the applied force on the cantilever. Other parameters that can potentially affect the quality of scanned surface for a tip-sample pair are tip geometry, crystallographic orientation, process conditions, experimental environment etc. Understanding their impact becomes crucial for the future development and implementation of this scalpel technique. In this project we will conduct both experimental and theoretical studies to fundamentally understand the wear mechanisms governing the material erosion at the nanoscale sliding contacts for various experimental conditions.

During the internship or thesis, the student will independently design and perform dedicated experiments. In parallel, some simulations will be run to correlate the SPM measurements with theoretical models. Consequently, the student will both be trained in AFM and simulation software, and will be taught to critically analyze, interpret and correlate data. Furthermore, the student will be a part of a multidisciplinary R&D team and will be guided by experts in the field.  Some basic understanding of material physics is a plus, but a proactive can-do attitude is even more important. A good command in English is required. At the end of this internship or thesis, the student will leave with knowledge on, material physics and skills on the characterization of state-of-the-art devices combined with an immersion into the high-tech research environment of imec.

Type of Project: Internship, thesis, combined internship/master thesis

Duration: 6 months

Master Program: Electrotechnics/Electrical Engineering, Physics, Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, Engineering

Supervising scientists: For more information on the project or for sending in your application contact Komal Pandey ( and Kristof Paredis (
KU Leuven supervisor: Wilfried Vandervorst

Imec allowance will be provided