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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 48, Iss. 17 — Jun. 10, 2009
  • pp: 3243–3249

Developing optical efficiency through optimized coating structure: biomimetic inspiration from white beetles

Benny T. Hallam, Anthony G. Hiorns, and Peter Vukusic  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 48, Issue 17, pp. 3243-3249 (2009)

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The recent discovery of brilliant whiteness in ultrathin beetle scales indicated the availability of significant whiteness, brightness, and opacity from limited sample thickness. This is achieved in the beetle through optimization of the packing density of scattering centers in its elytral scales. Here, we directly test and apply this idea to whiteness and brightness in the production and appearance of mineral coatings on paper by varying the scattering center parameters that underpin its optical properties. Through biomimetic design principles, we find that desirably high optical scattering from mineral coatings can be achieved. Commercially, by using appropriately designed coating formulations, this leads to the prospect of equal optical performance using less scattering material.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(260.0260) Physical optics : Physical optics
(290.5850) Scattering : Scattering, particles
(350.4990) Other areas of optics : Particles
(160.1245) Materials : Artificially engineered materials

ToC Category:

Original Manuscript: April 7, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: May 7, 2009
Published: June 8, 2009

Virtual Issues
Vol. 4, Iss. 8 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Benny T. Hallam, Anthony G. Hiorns, and Peter Vukusic, "Developing optical efficiency through optimized coating structure: biomimetic inspiration from white beetles," Appl. Opt. 48, 3243-3249 (2009)

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