Journal of Materials Research


High refractive index films of polymer nanocomposites

Lorenz Zimmennanna1, Martin Weibela1, Walter Caseria1 and Ulrich W. Sutera1

a1 Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule, Institut für Polymere, ETH-Zentrum, CH-8092 Zürich, Switzerland


Solutions of PbS particles and gelatin were used for the preparation of nanocomposites by a spin-coating process. This allows for the preparation of nanocomposite films with controlled thickness, e.g., between 40 nm and 2 μm for a film containing 45 wt.% PbS. Surface roughness and film thickness were investigated by surface profilometry and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The refractive index at 632.8 nm can be expressed by a linear function of the volume fraction of PbS in the range of 0 to 55 vol. % PbS. In this range, the refractive index increases from 1.5 to 2.5 with increasing PbS ratio and belongs, therefore, to the highest refractive indices known for polymeric composite materials.

(Received July 06 1992)

(Accepted March 19 1993)