Many applications require surfaces that are highly reflective, and the most common technique for making mirrored surfaces is to vacuum deposit a reflective coating onto a polished surface. At Newport Thin Film Lab, we offer two types of mirror coatings to help with this. The two options for vacuum deposited thin film reflectors are metal mirrors or dielectric mirrors.
Metal Mirror Coatings – Aluminum (Al.) – Copper (Cu.) – Gold (Au.) – Silver (Ag.)
Metal mirrors consist of a metallic coating. However, bare metals scratch easily, so it is common to deposit a dielectric layer over the metal layer to increase durability. These are referred to as protected metal films (e. g., protected aluminum). Often a more sophisticated multi-layer coating is deposited over the metal film to provide increased reflectivity or otherwise modify the performance of the mirror. Designs include protected and enhanced Gold, Aluminum and Silver. Coatings can be designed for first or second surface reflection, angle of incidence and substrate material. Coatings are optimized for maximum performance in the UV to Infrared regions.
Full dielectric mirrors are manufactured from ceramic materials instead of a metal layer, and rely on constructive interference to generate high reflectance. As such, they operate over a much narrower wavelength region than metal mirrors and are angle sensitive. However, they offer the advantage of extreme durability compared to metal mirrors, and can operate effectively in high temperature environments. Moreover, they are more environmentally stable than metal mirrors.<br><br>
Newport Thin Film Laboratory has extensive experience in the manufacture of high reflection coatings for ultraviolet, visible and infrared applications. The highest overall reflectance (R >99.9%) can be achieved with relatively narrow band dielectric reflectors which can be optimized for any given performance band. However, very high reflectors can be manufactured for almost any application, including multiple bands and wide bands.
** (Available in the ultravoilet, visible and infrared)