The physical, chemical, and biological properties of nanostructures depend strongly on their geometrical dimensions. Here we present a fast, noninvasive, simple-to-perform, purely optical method that is capable of characterizing nanostructure dimensions over large areas with an accuracy comparable to that of scanning electron microscopy. This far-field method is based on the analysis of unique fingerprints in experimentally measured reflectance spectra using full three-dimensional optical modeling. We demonstrate the strength of our method on large-area (millimeter-sized) arrays of vertical InP nanowires, for which we simultaneously determine the diameter and length as well as cross-sample morphological variations thereof. Explicitly, the diameter is determined with an accuracy better than 10 nm and the length with an accuracy better than 30 nm. The method is versatile and robust, and we believe that it will provide a powerful and standardized measurement technique for large-area nanostructure arrays suitable for both research and industrial applications.
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