Influence of noise on force measurements

Giovanni Volpe, Laurent Helden, Thomas Brettschneider, Jan Wehr, Clemens Bechinger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

110 Scopus citations


We demonstrate how the ineluctable presence of thermal noise alters the measurement of forces acting on microscopic and nanoscopic objects. We quantify this effect exemplarily for a Brownian particle near a wall subjected to gravitational and electrostatic forces. Our results demonstrate that the force-measurement process is prone to artifacts if the noise is not correctly taken into account.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number170602
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number17
StatePublished - Apr 28 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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