Large-Scale and Wide-Gamut Coloration at the Diffraction Limit in Flexible, Self-Assembled Hierarchical Nanomaterials

Ning Li, Fei Xiang, Maxim S. Elizarov, Maxim Makarenko, Arturo B. Lopez, Fedor Getman, Marcella Bonifazi, Valerio Mazzone, Andrea Fratalocchi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Unveiling physical phenomena that generate controllable structural coloration is at the center of significant research efforts due to the platform potential for the next generation of printing, sensing, displays, wearable optoelectronics components, and smart fabrics. Colors based on e-beam facilities possess high resolutions above 100k dots per inch (DPI), but limit manufacturing scales up to 4.37 cm2, while requiring rigid substrates that are not flexible. State-of-art scalable techniques, on the contrary, provide either narrow gamuts or small resolutions. A common issue of current methods is also a heterogeneous resolution, which typically changes with the color printed. Here, a structural coloration platform with broad gamuts exceeding the red, green, and blue (RGB) spectrum in inexpensive, thermally resistant, flexible, and metallic-free structures at constant 101 600 DPI (at the diffraction limit), obtained via mass-production manufacturing is demonstrated. This platform exploits a previously unexplored physical mechanism, which leverages the interplay between strong scattering modes and optical resonances excited in fully 3D dielectric nanostructures with suitably engineered longitudinal profiles. The colors obtained with this technology are scalable to any area, demonstrated up to the single wafer (4 in.). These results open real-world applications of inexpensive, high-resolution, large-scale structural colors with broad chromatic spectra.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2108013
JournalAdvanced Materials
Issue number11
StatePublished - Mar 17 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Advanced Materials published by Wiley-VCH GmbH.


  • dielectrics
  • nanostructured materials
  • optical nanoresonators
  • structural color

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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