Porous multilayers of nanocolumnar SiOx/SiO2 thin films acting as near infrared (NIR) 1D-photonic nanostructures have been prepared by magnetron sputtering at oblique angles (MS-OA). A requirement for the tailored synthesis of these multilayers is the simultaneous control of both porosity and stoichiometry of the stacked films. This was achieved by adjusting the deposition angle and oxygen partial pressure according to a parametric formula. This methodologoy was proved by the synthesis of SiOx thin films with x close to 0.4, 0.8, 1.2, 1.6 and nanostructures varying from compact (at 0° deposition angle) to highly porous and nanocolumnar (at 70º and 85° deposition angles). The optical characterization of these films by UV-vis-NIR absorption spectroscopy also showed that absorption edge and refraction index at 1500 nm could be adjusted within wide variation ranges by controlling stoichiometry and porosity. The fine tuning of optical parameters offered by the MS-OAD methodology has been utilized for the tailored fabrication of SiOx-SiO2 porous multilayers acting as near infrared (NIR) 1D-photonic nanostructures with well-defined optofluidic responses upon liquid infiltration. Adjustable NIR Bragg mirrors with liquid tunable photonic response and Bragg microcavities for liquid sensing are presented as proof of concept of the MS-OAD manufacturing of these single-material photonic nanostructures utilized for optofluidic applications.
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