Creating optical surface properties by means of texturing and coating

Surfaces can be adjusted to create different optical effects. This allows for several applications, among which the most interesting are scientific applications with diffraction of light or where a single colour (wavelength) has been isolated from the light beam. For instance, spectroscopy, where light is broken up and spread over a detector to determine the chemical composition of the light source - a star or a flame. The optical behaviour of surfaces can be achieved with both texturing and coating.

The use of textures to create optical effects such as spreading, breaking and absorbing (optical black) of light is not uncommon. Femtosecond lasers offer unique opportunities to create such textures with LIPSS (laser-induced periodic surface structures). Further research was conducted in this area.

Optical coatings are frequently used to extend the optical properties of optical components such as windows, mirrors or lenses. One way to achieve this type of coating is by using a thin layer of material with the required properties. A typical example is the metallic reflective layer of a mirror. In practice, the metals aluminium, silver and gold are most often used for this purpose.

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