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Energy Express

  • Editor: Christian Seassal
  • Vol. 21, Iss. S6 — Nov. 4, 2013
  • pp: A1078–A1093

Perfect selective metamaterial solar absorbers

Hao Wang and Liping Wang  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 21, Issue S6, pp. A1078-A1093 (2013)

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In this work, we numerically investigate the radiative properties of metamaterial nanostructures made of two-dimensional tungsten gratings on a thin dielectric spacer and an opaque tungsten film from UV to mid-infrared region as potential selective solar absorbers. The metamaterial absorber with single-sized tungsten patches exhibits high absorptance in the visible and near-infrared region due to several mechanisms such as surface plasmon polaritons, magnetic polaritons, and intrinsic bandgap absorption of tungsten. Geometric effects on the resonance wavelengths and the absorptance spectra are studied, and the physical mechanisms are elucidated in detail. The absorptance could be further enhanced in a broader spectral range with double-sized metamaterial absorbers. The total solar absorptance of the optimized metamaterial absorbers at normal incidence could be more than 88%, while the total emittance is less than 3% at 100°C, resulting in total photon-to-heat conversion efficiency of 86% without any optical concentration. Moreover, the metamaterial solar absorbers exhibit quasi-diffuse behaviors as well as polarization independence. The results here will facilitate the design of novel highly efficient solar absorbers to enhance the performance of various solar energy conversion systems.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(240.5420) Optics at surfaces : Polaritons
(350.6050) Other areas of optics : Solar energy
(160.3918) Materials : Metamaterials

ToC Category:
Subwavelength structures, nanostructures

Original Manuscript: September 12, 2013
Revised Manuscript: October 20, 2013
Manuscript Accepted: October 25, 2013
Published: November 1, 2013

Hao Wang and Liping Wang, "Perfect selective metamaterial solar absorbers," Opt. Express 21, A1078-A1093 (2013)

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