Fabrication of self-aligned closed packed titania nanotube arrays in excess of 10 .mu.m in length and aspect ratio .apprxeq.10,000 by potentiostatic anodization of titanium is disclosed. Conditions for achieving complete anodization and absolute tailorability of Ti foil samples resulting in a self-standing mechanically robust titania membrane in excess of 1000 .mu.m are also disclosed.
 This invention was developed with government support under Grant No. DE-FG02-06ER15772, awarded by The Department of Energy, and under Grant No. CTS-0518269 awarded by the National Science Foundation. The government has certain rights in this invention.