Linear Viscoelasticity: Review of Theory and Applications in Atomic Force Microscopy
Recently, much research has been performed involving the mechanical analysis of biological and polymeric samples with the use of Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). Such materials require careful treatments which consider the rate-dependence of their viscoelastic response. Here, we review the fundamental theories of linear viscoelasticity, as well as their application to the analysis of AFM spectroscopy data. An outline of general viscoelastic mechanical phenomena is initially given, followed by a brief outline of AFM techniques. Then, an extensive outline of linear viscoelastic material models, as well as contact mechanics descriptions of AFM systems, are presented.
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