Perfect selective metamaterial solar absorbers

Hao Wang, Liping Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

224 Scopus citations

Abstract

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 midinfrared 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 quasidiffuse 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.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)A1078-A1093
JournalOptics Express
Volume21
Issue number106
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 4 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

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