M. Rukosuyev, P.C. Lee, M.B.G. Jun
Keywords: nanoparticle coating, spray, large area coating
Summary:Nanoparticle deposition or coatings have drawn significant attention of many researchers and companies because of their potential use in a broad range of applications. For example, nanoparticle coatings can be used to create conductive, catalytic, self-cleaning, and anti-reflective surfaces. There is a lot of potential for nanoparticle-based coatings; however, the challenge still lies in the large-scale deployment of these coatings. These coatings are typically applied using either spin-coating or dip-coating, and although potentially scalable, these methods prove to be a problematic at larger scales. Dipping becomes impractical when trying to coat very large pieces of float glass because of the inherent weight of the glass and the large volumes of solutions needed, while spin coating is useful only to coat very small (lab scale) areas. Thus, a simple, scalable and cost-effective method to deploy nanoparticle coatings at larger scales needs to be developed. The objective of the present research was to develop an innovative nanoparticle spray coating system, which will include an ultrasonic particle generation device and a nozzle for the spray deposition. Atomizing a solution with well dispersed nanoparticles renders a mist of droplets containing a small number of nanoparticles. The deposition nozzle, due to the larger diameter of the outlet channel, allows for high throughput of coating aerosol and, simultaneously, will accelerate and focus spray particles using central high-speed air flow. The proposed design could be potentially used for large area coating, such as windows and solar panels, as well as micro printing of electronic circuits and numerous other applications.