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Design of Ag–Si3N4 Nanocermet Coatings for Photothermal Conversion Applications

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For efficient photothermal conversion in solar selective coatings, high absorptance (α) in the visible region (VIS) and low thermal emittance (ε) in the infrared (IR) region at high operating temperature are the most desirable requirements. For this, nanocermet coatings are suitable candidate materials owing to their high photothermal conversion efficiency. Here we report the preparation of Ag–Si3N4 nanocermet spectrally selective coatings using magnetron sputtering technique from the sputtering of Ag and Si3N4 targets. The field emission scanning electron microscopy of the coatings confirmed the presence of Ag nanoparticles with an average diameter of 15–25 nm dispersed uniformly in the Si3N4 matrix. High absorptance (α = 0.933) in the VIS region and low emittance (ε = 0.15 on Cu substrate) in the IR region have been achieved for the optimized nanocermet coatings. The absorptance spectra of the coatings exhibited a strong resonance peak due to the surface plasmon resonance of the Ag nanoparticles, which shifted to higher wavelength with an increase in the size of Ag nanoparticles. Thermal stability tests of these coatings revealed their stability up to 300 °C in vacuum for 2 hrs.
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Keywords: AG-SI3N4 NANOCERMETS; SPECTRALLY SELECTIVE COATINGS; SPUTTERING; SURFACE PLASMON RESONANCE

Document Type: Short Communication

Publication date: 2012-01-01

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  • Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Letters (NNL) is a multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal consolidating nanoscale research activities in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine into a single and unique reference source. NNL provides the means for scientists, engineers, medical experts and technocrats to publish original short research articles as communications/letters of important new scientific and technological findings, encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of the physical sciences, engineering and medicine.
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