Roland Piquepaille writes "Dr John Sader, from the University of Melbourne, discovered a design flaw in a key component of the Atomic Force Microscope (AFM). He 'used established mechanical principles to prove that the popular V-shaped cantilever inadvertently degrades the performance of the instrument, and delivers none of its intended benefits.' This finding may reshape the industry by proposing a single new standard and because the AFM 'has been the instrument of choice for three dimensional measurements at the atomic scale, since its invention in 1986.' Check this column for more details and an AFM diagram or read the original University of Melbourne's article. You also can visit the 'How AFM works' page."