We describe the use of hard etching methods to create nanodimensional channels and their use as templates for the formation of polymer filament arrays with precise dimensional and orientational control in a single integrated step. The procedure is general as illustrated by the radical, coordination, and photochemical polymerizations that were performed in these nanochannels. The nanochannel templates (20 nm high, 20-200 nm wide, and 100 μm long) were fabricated by the combined use of electron-beam lithography and a sacrificial metal line etching technique. Radical polymerization of acrylates, metal-catalyzed polymerization of norbornene, and photochemical polymerization of 1,4-diiodothiophene were carried out in these nanochannels. The polymers grown follow the dimensions and orientation of the channels, and the polymer filaments can be released without breaking. The approach opens up the possibility of just-in-place manufacturing and processing of patterns and devices from nanostructured polymers using well-established polymer chemistry.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry