Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, Vol.68, No.3-4, 313-336, 2001
Anti-reflection (AR) coatings made by sol-gel processes: A review
Traditionally, various vacuum-based processes, depending on material systems and properties, and chemical etching process have been used for producing different types of anti-reflection (AR) coating on different substrate materials. In this paper, the development of sol-gel derived AR coating on different substrates for various applications in the past 40 years are reviewed. These coatings possess good uniformity in thickness and properties which have met requirements for various applications. The major approaches to fabricate AR coating and their characteristics have been discussed. This paper outlines the major solution coating processes and design principles of AR coatings. Major fabrication processes used in AR coating technologies have been compared. Different solution chemistries developed for producing different materials for AR coating preparation have been extensively reviewed. The optical performance of different types of sol-gel-derived AR coatings have been summarized and comparison to the commercial AR coating produced by traditional technologies have been discussed. The sol-gel AR coating has been shown to possess comparable or superior performance to those produced by vacuum-based processes.