We present the design and fabrication of a Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems based piezoresistive cantilever force sensor as a potential candidate for micro/nano indentation of biological specimens such as cells and tissues. The fabricated force sensor consists of a silicon cantilever beam with a p-type piezoresistor and a cylindrical probing tip made from SU-8 polymer. One of the key features of the sensor is that a standard silicon wafer is used to make silicon-on-insulator (SOI), thereby reducing the cost of fabrication. To make SOI from standard silicon wafer the silicon film was sputtered on an oxidized silicon wafer and annealed at 1050 °C so as to obtain polycrystalline silicon. The sputtered silicon layer was used to fabricate the cantilever beam. The as-deposited and annealed silicon films were experimentally characterized using X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). The annealed silicon film was polycrystalline with a low surface roughness of 3.134 nm (RMS value).

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