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7 May 2009 Demonstration of flexible nanocomposite NIR mirror
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Thin film metal oxide coatings have been used for commercial electromagnetic filters from the UV to infra red regions for over half a century. Deposition onto a substrate has typically been accomplished using vapor deposition techniques and more recently sol-gel methods. These coatings provide very good optical performance under abrasion, thermal cycles and variable humidity when applied on substrates with similar thermal and mechanical properties. When conventional metal oxide coatings are applied to flexible, relatively soft substrates such as polymers, mismatches in mechanical properties can reduce interfacial adhesion or accelerate mechanical failures. The authors recently showed that a thin film polymer nanocomposite can be applied on a polymer substrate and maintain adhesion even under high strains. This paper describes the demonstration of an IR mirror using fifteen discrete layers with an IR-reflectance that exceeds 90 percent at 1064 nm and transparent in the visible spectrum. We will present the results with thin film stacks containing over 15 discrete layers for IR mirror applications, and our recent work shows that the technology can produce thin film stacks containing 30 layers or more. Furthermore these coatings have high flexibility and can be applied to curved polymer substrates. These IR mirrors can withstand thermal cycling and large strains much better than those made using the state of the art techniques.
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Thad Druffel and Eric Grulke "Demonstration of flexible nanocomposite NIR mirror", Proc. SPIE 7298, Infrared Technology and Applications XXXV, 729812 (7 May 2009);

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