Self Assembly of Nanostructures Using Nanoporous Alumina Templates
Nanotechnology, the science and engineering of nanometer-sized objects, is a major research endeavor owing to the innumerable possibilities—and profit—the field has to offer. Nanostructures exhibit unique physical and chemical properties compared to “bulk” structures. This chapter focuses on a chemical technique that is rapidly emerging as the workhorse for making well-regimented quasi-periodic arrays of nanostructures of virtually any material on arbitrary substrates. It describes various routes to the synthesis of nanostructures using anodic alumina membrane technology. Many of these nanostructures, fabricated in our laboratories and elsewhere, exhibit intriguing device functionality. Anodized aluminum oxide (alumina) nanoporous membranes have been a subject of considerable interest for many years, detailed studies having been undertaken for more than half a century. Anodization of the electropolished Al foils in a suitable acid leads to the growth of the porous alumina film on the foil surface.