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Materials 2013, 6(9), 3710-3726; doi:10.3390/ma6093710
Article

Single Layer Broadband Anti-Reflective Coatings for Plastic Substrates Produced by Full Wafer and Roll-to-Roll Step-and-Flash Nano-Imprint Lithography

1
,
1, 2
,
2
,
1,3
,
2
 and
1,4,*
1 The Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), De Rondom 1, 5612 AP Eindhoven, The Netherlands 2 Holst Centre, High Tech Campus 31, 5656 AE Eindhoven, The Netherlands 3 Zuyd Hogeschool, Nieuw Eyckholt 300, 6419 DJ Heerlen, The Netherlands 4 DWI an der RWTH Aachen e.V., Forckenbeckstrasse 50, 52074 Aachen, Germany
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 July 2013 / Revised: 14 August 2013 / Accepted: 19 August 2013 / Published: 27 August 2013
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Abstract

Anti-reflective coatings (ARCs) are used to lower the reflection of light on the surface of a substrate. Here, we demonstrate that the two main drawbacks of moth eye-structured ARCs—i.e., the lack of suitable coating materials and a process for large area, high volume applications—can be largely eliminated, paving the way for cost-efficient and large-scale production of durable moth eye-structured ARCs on polymer substrates. We prepared moth eye coatings on polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) and polycarbonate using wafer-by-wafer step-and-flash nano-imprint lithography (NIL). The reduction in reflection in the visible field achieved with these coatings was 3.5% and 4.0%, respectively. The adhesion of the coating to both substrates was good. The moth eye coating on PMMA demonstrated good performance in three prototypical accelerated ageing tests. The pencil hardness of the moth eye coatings on both substrates was <4B, which is less than required for most applications and needs further optimization. Additionally, we developed a roll-to-roll UV NIL pilot scale process and produced moth eye coatings on polyethylene terephthalate (PET) at line speeds up to two meters per minute. The resulting coatings showed a good replication of the moth eye structures and, consequently, a lowering in reflection of the coated PET of 3.0%.
Keywords: anti-reflective; coating; nano-imprint lithography; roll-to-roll; durability; moth eye anti-reflective; coating; nano-imprint lithography; roll-to-roll; durability; moth eye
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Burghoorn, M.; Roosen-Melsen, D.; de Riet, J.; Sabik, S.; Vroon, Z.; Yakimets, I.; Buskens, P. Single Layer Broadband Anti-Reflective Coatings for Plastic Substrates Produced by Full Wafer and Roll-to-Roll Step-and-Flash Nano-Imprint Lithography. Materials 2013, 6, 3710-3726.

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