Nanoporous and nanostructured films have become increasingly important to the microelectronics and photonics industries. They provide a route to low dielectric constant materials that will enable future generations of powerful microprocessors. They are the only route to achieving materials with refractive indices less than 1.2, a key feature for the future development of photonic crystal devices, enhanced omni-directional reflectors, enhanced anti-reflection coatings and black-body absorbers. In addition, these films exhibit tremendous potential for separations, catalytic, biomedical and heat transfer applications. This article will review two primary techniques for manufacturing these films, evaporation induced self-assembly and oblique or glancing angle deposition, and will discuss some of the film properties critical to their use in the microelectronics and photonics industries.

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DOI: 10.1016/S1369-7021(09)70179-8