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Suppressing Structural Colors of Photocatalytic Optical Coatings on Glass: The Critical Role of SiO2

Abstract : The appearance of structural colors on coated-glass is a critical esthetical drawback toward industrialization of photocatalytic coatings on windows for architecture or automobile. Herein we describe a rational approach to suppress the structural color of mesoporous TiO2-based coatings preserving photoactivity and mechanical stiffness. Addition of SiO2 as third component is discussed. TixSi(1-x)O2 mesoporous coatings were fabricated by one-step liquid deposition process through the evaporation induced self-assembling and characterized by GI-SAXS, GI-WAXS, electron microscopies, and in situ Environmental Ellipsometry Porosimetry. Guided by optical simulation, we investigated the critical role of SiO2 on the optical responses of the films but also on the structural, mechanical, and photocatalytic properties, important requirements to go toward real applications. We demonstrate that adding SiO2 to porous TiO2 allows tuning and suppression of structural colors through refractive index matching and up to 160% increase in mechanical stiffening of the films. This study leads us to demonstrate an example of “invisible” coating, in which the light reflection is angle- and thickness-independent, and exhibiting high porosity, mechanical stiffness, and photoactivity.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 11:39:22 AM
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Ronghua Li, Mickael Boudot, Cédric Boissière, David Grosso, Marco Faustini. Suppressing Structural Colors of Photocatalytic Optical Coatings on Glass: The Critical Role of SiO2. ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, Washington, D.C. : American Chemical Society, 2017, 9 (16), pp.14093-14102. ⟨10.1021/acsami.7b02233⟩. ⟨hal-01510238⟩

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