Optical properties of silicon and germanium nanowire fabric

Vincent C. Holmberg, Timothy D. Bogart, Aaron Michael Chockla, Colin M. Hessel, Brian A. Korgel*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


The optical properties of free-standing nonwoven silicon (Si) and germanium (Ge) nanowire fabrics, including diffuse and specular reflectance, diffuse and direct transmittance, and absorptance spectra, were measured using an integrating sphere to account fully for all incident photons. Very thin, 50 μm thick, sheets with ∼90% void volume have extremely high optical densities. They are optically opaque across nearly all wavelengths from ultraviolet to near-infrared, and only minimal light penetrates when photon energies are below the band gap. The high optical density arises from a combination of scattering and absorption due to their high aspect ratio and narrow diameter as well as surface effects due to their very high surface area to volume ratio.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)22486-22491
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number42
StatePublished - Oct 25 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Energy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films

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