Durability Testing of Antireflection Coatings for Solar Applications

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


    Antireflection (AR) coatings can be incorporated into highly transmitting glazings that, depending on their cost, performance, and durability of optical properties, can be economically viable in solar collectors, agricultural greenhouses, and PV systems. A number of AR-coated glazings have been prepared under the auspices of the International Energy Agency (IEA) Working Group on Durability ofMaterials for Solar Thermal Collectors. The AR coatings are of two types, including 1) various sol-gels applied to glass and 2) an embossed treatment of sheet acrylic. Typically, for unweathered glazings, a 4%-5% increase in solar-weighted transmittance has been achieved. For AR-coated glass, reflectance values as low as 0.5%-0.7% at selected wavelengths (680-720 nm) were obtained. To determinethe durability of the hemispherical transmittance, several collaborating countries are testing these materials both outdoors and in accelerated weathering chambers. All materials exposed outdoors are affixed to mini-collector boxes to simulate flat-plate collector conditions. Results for candidate AR coatings weathered at geographically disperse outdoor test sites exhibit changes in spectraltransmittance primarily in the high visible range (600?700 nm). Accelerated testing at measured levels of simulated solar irradiance and at different constant levels of temperature and relative humidity have been performed in different countries. Parallel testing with different levels of laboratory-controlled relevant stress factors permits the time-dependent performance of these materials to becompared with measured results from in-service outdoor exposure conditions. Coating adhesion and performance loss resulting from dirt and dust retention are also discussed.
    Original languageAmerican English
    Number of pages14
    StatePublished - 1999
    EventSPIE's 44th Annual Meeting and Exhibition - Denver, Colorado
    Duration: 18 Jul 199923 Jul 1999


    ConferenceSPIE's 44th Annual Meeting and Exhibition
    CityDenver, Colorado

    NREL Publication Number

    • NREL/CP-520-26843


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