Atomic Force Microscopes are capable to provide non-destructive high resolution, CD-metrology and precise defect analysis. However, a conventional AFM has not enough throughput for today’s large scale semiconductor manufacturing. The primary point remains the increase of the scanning area in case of large wafers, masks, displays or dies. Cantilever array-based AFMs are intended to increase the imaging throughput by parallelizing the work of many AFM probes that may be practiced by parallel AFM systems that are capable to operate autonomously. An active cantilever scheme makes it possible to sense electronically the deflection and individually to control the actuation of every cantilever in the array. Each cantilever in the array represents a self-sustaining AFM-hardware system for metrology and imaging. In that, the multiple parallel probes are forming many AFMs capable to work independently.