Laser Nanopatterning of Colored Ink Thin Films for Photonic Devices

Bader AlQattan, David Benton, Ali K. Yetisen, Haider Butt*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nanofabrication through conventional methods such as electron beam writing and photolithography is time-consuming, high cost, complex, and limited in terms of the materials which can be processed. Here, we present the development of a nanosecond Nd:YAG laser (532 nm, 220 mJ) in holographic Denisyuk reflection mode method for creating ablative nanopatterns from thin films of four ink colors (black, red, blue, and brown). We establish the use of ink as a recording medium in different colors and absorption ranges to rapidly produce optical nanostructures in 1D geometries. The gratings produced with four different types of ink had the same periodicity (840 nm); however, they produce distant wavelength dependent diffraction responses to monochromatic and broadband light. The nanostructures of gratings consisting of blue and red inks displayed high diffraction efficiency of certain wavelengths while the black and brown ink based gratings diffracted broadband light. These gratings have high potential to be used as low-cost photonic structures in wavelength-dependent optical filters. We anticipate that the rapid production of gratings based on different ink formulations can enable optics applications such as holographic displays in data storage, light trapping, security systems, and sensors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39641-39649
Number of pages9
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number45
Early online date31 Oct 2017
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2017

Bibliographical note

© 2017 American Chemical Society. This is an open access article published under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the author and source are cited.

Funding: Leverhulme Trust and Wellcome Trust.


  • diffraction gratings
  • printing
  • holography
  • photonic devices
  • laser ablation


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