Abstract : We have developed a combined microscope Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) / Scanning Tunneling Microscope (STM) at very low temperature. This microscope allows the study of the electronic Local Density Of States (LDOS) on current biased nanocircuits. We have developed a nanofabrication process to obtain superconducting wires of niobium (Nb) with 10×300 nm2 section.
This process gives on Nb a subnanometric surface roughness. We describe also the method of tip's fabrication which are glued on a tuning fork to make a probe. Using a quartz tuning fork as probe for the microscope allows a fully electrical detection in AFM mode and provides the required rigidity in spectroscopic mode. The tuning fork is well adapted to cryogenic environment dissipating a power less than 1nW. Our microscope features atomic resolution in the vertical direction and stable tunnel junction RT < 10MOhms. LDOS measured at T = 100mK on a Nb
wire are compared with the BCS theory taking into account a Dynes parameter, corresponding to
inelastic collisions. Our measurements fit very well this model with an observed minimum electronic's
effective temperature above the cryostat temperature. Finally, we measured LDOS of biased
wires to demonstrate the possibility of this kind of measurements out of equilibrium superconducting
systems by STM.