Electron and ion beams can be used to deposit thin films and etch surfaces using gas phase precursors. However, the generation of undesirable gas phase products and the diffusion of the reactive species beyond the region irradiated by the electron or ion beam can limit selectivity. Tn this paper, the feasibility of processing condensed precursors such as diborane, tri-methyl aluminum, ammonia and water at 78 K with low energy (100–1000 eV) electron and ion beams (Ar+, N2
+ and H2
+) ranging in current density from 50 nA to several μ a per cm2 is examined. It was found that boron, boron nitride and stoichiometric aluminum oxide films could be deposited from the condensed volatile species using charged particle beams and some of the physical and chemical aspects and limitations of this new technique are discussed.