Metal Coatings: In some cases it makes much more sense to coat a simple metal coating rather than a complex all dielectric coating. Although metals tend not to have as high reflectivity and laser resistance; a metal coating is more cost effective, induces less polarization effects, and typically covers a broader reflectivity band. Thin film accuracy and rate control for a particular metal type is crucial. Each material requires a different technique in order to maximize the reflectivity benefits for that particular metal. In addition, different bonding and protection layers may be required for each metal type. Although it may seem straight forward, these things are all carefully dialed into our processes from years and years of experience. You might say we have learned what works by trying what has not. Thankfully, we have our own Environmental Test Lab and can qualify the weather resistance for every coating formula. All our protected Mirrors Pass MIL-C-13508C. We coat just about every type of metal that exists. Below are only a few examples of common coatings we do here at Cascade
Below are some featured Coatings where customers wanted deviations from the standard, straight forward, bare metal or protected metal. Here we will highlight some of the more exotic Enhanced Metals we have deposited for our customers
When Laser Power is not a concern and excellent reflection in the visible is required it is always more cost effective to go with an Enhanced Aluminum option. The other added benefit is that it is much more robust against Environmental testing than Silver. Due to our involvement in NASA UVI programs we have excellent UV Protected and Enhanced options
When high levels of reflectivity in the VIS, NIR, and IR are required along with moderate levels of laser power Silver would be the best choice. Although, our protected Silver passes most MIL specs we try and only use it as required due to its innate propensity to tarnish.
Enhanced Au coating: This customer challenged us and asked us to enhance gold at both 1064nm and 1550nm. They also required us to be able to withstand laser power in the Mega Watt Range