Reflection from various surfaces of many optical systems, such as photovoltaics and displays, is a critical issue for their performance, and antireflection coatings play a pivotal role in a wide variety of optical technologies, reducing light reflectance loss and hence maximizing light transmission. With the current movement toward optically transparent polymeric media and coatings for antireflection technology, the need for economical and environmentally friendly materials and methods without dependence on shape or size has clearly been apparent. Herein, we demonstrate novel antireflection coatings composed of chitin nanofibers (CHINFs), extracted from crab shell as a biomass material through an aqueous-based layer-by-layer self-assembly process to control the porosity. Increasing the number of air spaces inside the membrane led low refractive index, and precise control of refractive index derived from the stacking of the CHINFs achieved the highest transmittance with investigating the surface structure and the refractive index depending on the solution pH. At a wavelength of 550 nm, the transmittance of the coatings was 96.4%, which was 4.8% higher than that of a glass substrate, and their refractive index was 1.30. Further critical properties of the films were the durability and the antifogging performance derived from the mechanical stability and hydrophilicity of CHINFs, respectively. The present study may contribute to a development of systematically designed nanofibrous films which are suitable for optical applications operating at a broadband visible wavelength with durability and antifog surfaces.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)