The conditions required for supramolecular electronics, e.g. nano-sized optoelectronic devices, will be illustrated on the basis of the programmed self-assembly of π-conjugated systems into individual nanosized wires. Using the supramolecular design rules nanowires can be created from almost any polymeric and oligomeric π-conjugated system. In the case of oligomers it is even possible to construct individual wires having a uniform diameter of one molecule thickness. The construction of wires on a substrate is possible by self-assembly in solution or during the deposition. The transfer of the supramolecular stacks from solution to a solid support is a very delicate process. A comprehensive knowledge of all intermolecular interactions gives rise to controlled transfer of π-conjugated assemblies to specific surfaces. There are a large number of very appealing targets that should be reached before supramolecular electronics can serve as an attractive alternative in between single molecule electronics and bulk devices. Nevertheless, the combination of exciting scientific results and intriguing technological challenges creates an interesting future for supramolecular electronics.
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