A moth’s eye is currently being researched as a potential component to help improve the efficiency of solar cells. A team in Singapore is investigating the complex structure of a moth’s eye and testing the lens patterns, which seem to be the reasoning behind the efficiency.
Read more below from and article by Gizmodo:
Inspiration lies in the strangest of places—and for researchers at the Agency for Science, Technology & Research in Singapore, that includes the eye of moth. A new antireflective coating inspired by the creature’s ocular faculties could help bump up the efficiency of solar cells.
The eyes of nocturnal moths contain a series compound lenses: micro lenses called ommatidia which are themselves patterned with a nanoscale dome-shaped bumps. These structures naturally help reduce reflection of light at a wide range of wavelengths, enabling better night vision to help moths navigate in the dark. (Incidentally, they also stop water collecting on the eye, but that’s less important here).
The ability to capture light and not let go is appealing in the world of solar cells because it can increase efficiency. So the team from Singapore has taken inspiration from the complex lens structure to create a process that stamps patterns over the surface of a material, replicating the antireflective effects of the moths’ eyes. The results are published in ACS Nano.