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calibcant: tools for thermally calibrating AFM cantilevers

Project description

calibcant: tools for thermally calibrating AFM cantilevers

Calculates the spring constant k of a cantilever using the equipartition theorem:

1/2 k_B T = 1/2 K x^2

The analysis uses the expected power spectral density (PSD) of a damped simple harmonic oscillator to filter out noise from the measured PSD.




I’ve packaged calibcant for Gentoo. You need layman and my wtk overlay. Install with:

# emerge -av app-portage/layman
# layman --add wtk
# emerge -av sci-physics/calibcant


If you’re installing by hand or packaging calibcant for another distribution, you’ll need the following dependencies:

Package Debian Gentoo
Numpy python-numpy dev-python/numpy
Scipy python-scipy sci-libs/scipy
H5config   dev-python/h5config [1]
H5Py python-h5py dev-python/h5py
Matplotlib python-matplotlib dev-python/matplotlib
Nose python-nose dev-python/nose
FFT_tools   dev-python/FFT-tools [1]
Pypiezo   sci-libs/pypiezo [1]
[1](1, 2, 3) In the wtk overlay.

You’ll also need my pyafm and stepper packages, or suitable replacements.

Installing by hand

Calibcant is available as a Git repository:

$ git clone git://

See the homepage for details. To install the checkout, run the standard:

$ python install


See the module docstrings for simple examples.


Run internal unit tests with:

$ nosetests --with-doctest --doctest-tests calibcant


This project is distributed under the GNU General Public License Version 3 or greater.


W. Trevor King Copyright 2007-2012

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