As semiconductor manufacturing technologies incorporate dielectric films to improve device performance, innovative techniques are needed to ensure film integrity. Insulating films with low dielectric constants (k) are critical for continued scaling. However, the high carbon content and porosity that lower a film’s k-value also make it fragile and prone to damage. Furthermore, process steps such as etch, ash/strip, and wet clean can damage low-k materials and increase effective k-values through, for example, carbon loss or water adsorption. Because of this, innovative ultraviolet thermal processing (UVTP) techniques are needed to mechanically strengthen films, remove pore-generating precursors (porogens), and ensure low-k film integrity. UVTP can also be used to increase strain in front-end-of-the-line (FEOL) nitride layers in order to enhance device performance.