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BlackWood: Sustainable Superblack Materials from Wood for Light Management and Harnessing

BlackWOOD project aims at developing renewable superblack materials for advanced light management. In the project, we use wood and minimal loads of light-absorbing particles to prepare biohybrids whose structures are optimized to yield materials with light reflection below 0.5% after their carbonization. This will enable new applications of wood in laser beam management, optical sensors, and many others.

Main results

We have demonstrated wood-based materials with ultralow reflectance (<0.5%) in the visible range.

  • We have developed a processing framework that combines controlled delignification with controlled carbonization and thus can manipulate the wood microstructure to a great extent inducing the growth of carbon nanopyramids.

  • In subsequent effort we were able to reconfigure wood by manipulating lignin content and allocation in wood, which enabled the growth of carbon microneedles.

  • These manipulations allowed:

  • Lowest reflectance ever achieved for wood materials, 0.45%.

  • Expansion of light absorption ability from UV-Vis to IR and microwave region, in a single material.

Research Project Managers

Bruno Mattos, Aalto

Alexey Khakalo, VTT

Project status

Funded by FinnCERES from January 2021 until December 2022.

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