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Self-assembly process means a spontaneous formation of monolayers of surfactant compounds on the surfaces of some solid materials due to strong specific molecular-substrate interactions.

 

The process stops itself when active sites on the surface are occupied (or can not be reached) by the molecules.

 

Only molecules with definite functional groups can be attached to the surfaces of materials of several types using self-assembly technique. However, in spite of such a limitation self-assembly is widely used for surface modification because extremely stable, mechanically strong, uniform, and super-thin coatings can be produced in this way.

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Origin of Self-Assembly method

                                                         can be refered to the work by Bigelow et al. [15] published in 1946, but only in the eighties the interest in this area started to grow and self-assembled monolayers were introduced as a possible alternative to LB films [16] (J. Sagiv).

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Review of main publications (up to 1990) can be found in:

 

A. Ulman, An Introduction to Ultrathin Organic Films: from Langmuir-Blodgett to Self-Assembly. Academic Press: Boston, San Diego, New York, London, Sydney, Tokyo, Toronto,1991.

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