(430f) Jacob and the Surface Forces Apparatus (SFA) | AIChE

(430f) Jacob and the Surface Forces Apparatus (SFA)


Professor Jacob Israelachvili enjoyed designing devices for measuring interfacial sciences phenomena. His main device was the Surface Forces Apparatus (SFA), which he first made during his PhD with his advisor Professor David Tabor. Throughout the years he modified and improve the SFA; however, the core of the SFA has always been the ability to measuring forces between extended surfaces (usually mica in cross-cylinder configuration) using the white light interferometric technique that provids Angstrom precision in separation distance positioning and measurements. He also designed various attachment to the SFA, such as the friction device, bimorph slider, and fluorescence microscope.

In this talk I will present the development of the SFA that were designed by Jacob – with a few (of many) milestone results – and end with the most recent design: the miniature version that fits onto an optical microscope – the µSFA.