Nanofabrication and coloration study of artificial Morpho butterfly wings with aligned lamellae layers
OPEN Scientific reports | 19 Nov 2015
S Zhang and Y Chen
The bright and iridescent blue color from Morpho butterfly wings has attracted worldwide attentions to explore its mysterious nature for long time. Although the physics of structural color by the nanophotonic structures built on the wing scales has been well established, replications of the wing structure by standard top-down lithography still remains a challenge. This paper reports a technical breakthrough to mimic the blue color of Morpho butterfly wings, by developing a novel nanofabrication process, based on electron beam lithography combined with alternate PMMA/LOR development/dissolution, for photonic structures with aligned lamellae multilayers in colorless polymers. The relationship between the coloration and geometric dimensions as well as shapes is systematically analyzed by solving Maxwell’s Equations with a finite domain time difference simulator. Careful characterization of the mimicked blue by spectral measurements under both normal and oblique angles are carried out. Structural color in blue reflected by the fabricated wing scales, is demonstrated and further extended to green as an application exercise of the new technique. The effects of the regularity in the replicas on coloration are analyzed. In principle, this approach establishes a starting point for mimicking structural colors beyond the blue in Morpho butterfly wings.
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