Assessment of the antireflection property of moth wings by three-dimensional transfer-matrix optical simulations

O. Deparis, N. Khuzayim, A. Parker, J.P. Vigneron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The wings of the moth Cacostatia ossa (Ctenuchinae) are covered on both sides by non-close-packed nipple arrays which are known to act as broadband antireflection coatings. Experimental evaluation of the antireflection property of these biological structures is problematic because of the lack of a proper reference for reflectance measurements, i.e., a smooth surface made of the same material as the wing. Theoretical evaluation, on the other hand, is much more reliable provided that optical simulations are carried out on a realistic structural model of the wing. Based on detailed morphological characterizations, we established a three-dimensional (3D) model of the wing and used 3D transfer-matrix optical simulations in order to demonstrate the broadband antireflection property of the wings of Cacostatia ossa. Differences between hemispherical and specular reflectance spectra revealed that diffraction effects were not negligible for this structure although they did not jeopardize the antireflection efficiency. The influences of the backside corrugation and of the material's absorption on the reflectance spectrum were also studied. In addition, simulations based on an effective-medium model of the wing were carried out using a multilayer thin-film code. In comparison with the latter simulations, the 3D transfer-matrix simulations were found to be more accurate for evaluating the antireflection property.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Volume79
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2009

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