ion track nanotechnology (rus. ионно-трековая технология) — method of forming narrow channels (tracks) in solid substances and materials using irradiation (bombardment) by particles or heavy ions.


Radiation damage results in the emergence of tracks containing a disordered region of 5-10 nm in diameter with local melting, amorphisation and the destruction of the material in such a region or close to it. The regions occurring along the tracks can be selectively etched to form a membrane with a smooth surface and low-dispersion system of pores (see Fig. and the article on track membrane). Hollow quasi-one-dimensional track regions can be filled with various metals by galvanic deposition. For example, the irradiation of polymer films by krypton ions (Kr+) with the energy of 210 MeV, subsequent electrochemical deposition of copper in the resulting tracks and dissolution of the polymer matrix in alkali enable the production of individual nanowires. It is also possible to produce metal micro-brushes (nanowire structures on a solid substrate) used as microwave filters. In this case, one surface of the polymer film is pre-sprayed with a thin layer of metal (copper, nickel), then the other side of the polymer film is irradiated, metal is electrochemically deposited in the formed tracks and the polymer is dissolved. The high volume concentration of tracks in solids allows creating nanostructures with a significantly higher density of elements than the density achieved in modern integrated circuits.


A model of membrane produced using the ion track technology.
A model of membrane produced using the ion track technology.


  • Gusev Alexander I.
  • Tolkachev Nikolay N.


  1. Reutov V.F., Dmitriev S.N. Ion track nanotechnology (in Russian) // Rossijjsk. khim. zhurn. 2002. Мoscow. 46, №5. 74–80 pp.
  2. Gusev A. I. Nanomaterials, Nanostructures, and Nanotechnologies (in Russian) // Fizmatlit, Moscow (2007) - 416 pp.

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