The preparation of a plasmonically resonant VO2 thermochromic pigment
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Vanadium dioxide (VO2) undergoes a reversible metal-insulator transition, normally at ~68 °C. While the properties of continuous semi-transparent coatings of VO2 are well known, there is far less information available concerning the potential use of discrete VO2 nanoparticles as a thermochromic pigment in opaque coatings. Individual VO 2 nanoparticles undergo a localized plasmon resonance with near-infrared light at about 1100 nm and this resonance can be switched on and off by simply varying the temperature of the system. Therefore, incorporation of VO2 nanoparticles into a coating system imbues the coating with the ability to self-adaptively modulate its own absorptive efficiency in the near-infrared. Here we examine the magnitude and control of this phenomenon. Prototype coatings are described, made using VO2 powder produced by an improved process. The materials are characterized using calorimetry, x-ray diffraction, high-resolution scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and by measurement of optical properties. © 2009 IOP Publishing Ltd.
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