This paper presents a new fabrication technology for conducting AFM cantilevers with integrated AlN-based piezoelectric actuators. A major effort has been done for the process integration of a high quality AlN layer onto the Si cantilever together with a high wear resistance, PtSi-based conducting tip. Functional AFM devices have been successfully tested in tapping mode imaging experiments. Such type of cantilevers are of great interest for dynamic AFM applications especially for tapping or dithering mode AFMs as well as for using the piezoelectric structures as an integrated position sensor. © 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd.