Broadband antireflective silicon nanostructures produced by spin-coated Ag nanoparticles
1 School of Information and Communications, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology, 1 Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju, 500-712, Republic of Korea
2 Advanced Photonics Research Institute, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology, 1 Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju, 500-712, Republic of Korea
Nanoscale Research Letters 2014, 9:54 doi:10.1186/1556-276X-9-54Published: 1 February 2014
We report the fabrication of broadband antireflective silicon (Si) nanostructures fabricated using spin-coated silver (Ag) nanoparticles as an etch mask followed by inductively coupled plasma (ICP) etching process. This fabrication technique is a simple, fast, cost-effective, and high-throughput method, making it highly suitable for mass production. Prior to the fabrication of Si nanostructures, theoretical investigations were carried out using a rigorous coupled-wave analysis method in order to determine the effects of variations in the geometrical features of Si nanostructures to obtain antireflection over a broad wavelength range. The Ag ink ratio and ICP etching conditions, which can affect the distribution, distance between the adjacent nanostructures, and height of the resulting Si nanostructures, were carefully adjusted to determine the optimal experimental conditions for obtaining desirable Si nanostructures for practical applications. The Si nanostructures fabricated using the optimal experimental conditions showed a very low average reflectance of 8.3%, which is much lower than that of bulk Si (36.8%), as well as a very low reflectance for a wide range of incident angles and different polarizations over a broad wavelength range of 300 to 1,100 nm. These results indicate that the fabrication technique is highly beneficial to produce antireflective structures for Si-based device applications requiring low light reflection.