The self-assembly processes of block copolymers offer interesting strategies to create patterns on nanometer length scales. The polymeric constituents, substrate surface properties, and experimental conditions all offer parameters that allow the control and optimization of pattern formation for specific applications. We review how such patterns can be obtained and discuss some potential applications using these patterns as (polymeric) nanostructures or templates, e.g. for nanoparticle assembly. The method offers interesting possibilities in combination with existing high-resolution lithography methods, and could become of particular interest in microtechnology and biosensing.

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DOI: 10.1016/S1369-7021(06)71621-2