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Results on electron irradiation of porous silicon are presented and discussed. An electron-beam lithography system is used to irradiate small surface portions of porous silicon, without the use of any sensitive resists. In this way, it has been possible to write pattern with lateral resolution down to 120 nm. It is suggested that direct exposure to electron irradiation provokes the formation of defects, with an enhanced reactivity of exposed areas. This effect is suggested as a possible way to micro- and nanostructuring of porous silicon. © 2003 American Institute of Physics.