Hard X-rays and soft-matter: processing of sol–gel films from a top down route
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A current trend of applied research in the field of nanomaterials is the integration of bottom up and top down fabrication methods. Sol–gel chemistry is widely applied to obtain different functional materials from a bottom up route, especially in the case of thin films. To fabricate devices based on sol–gel films, which include nanocomposites and mesoporous ordered materials, application of lithography technologies is mandatory. Among the different lithographic approaches, photolithography is widely used by companies using micro-fabrication processes. In this context, photolithography is a typical top down method that requires to be integrated as much as possible with deposition of thin films from a liquid phase. Recently we have developed a new integrated fabrication method which uses high energy photons, such as hard X-rays, which typically have energies between 2.5 and 12 keV, for the manipulation and production of a large variety of functional materials and devices. In the present review a short overview of such achievements is presented.
KeywordsSol–gel Films Lithography Self-assembly Mesoporous Deep X-ray Microfabrication
The RAS is kindly acknowledged for funding through CRP 26449 P.O.R. FSE 2007–2013, L.R.7/2007.
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