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topic 9985

Mirror plating for rigid plastic sheeting

Gold Touch  J G Nikolas  M and M Metallizing 

A discussion started in 2001 but continuing through 2018


Q. Dear sirs,

I am working on some experimental solar projects and have been looking for high quality reflective materials. Aluminum foil is being used successfully for a solar oven, but I would prefer to use a light weight sheet material where a mirrored surface could be maintained. A friend suggested a chrome plated plastic sheet, but I have not been able to find such a material. The material would have to be rigid enough to remain flat through various temperatures, and light enough that a 12 foot in diameter parabolic dish could be safely manhandled.

Thank you,

Gordon J. Hoffman
- Lewiston, Idaho, USA


Q. I wonder if there is a weatherproof thermoformable mirrorised ("sandwiched mirror coat") sheeting available?

Thank you,

Stuart Smyth
- Wicklow, IRELAND

September 2018

A. Hi Stuart. Although I don't know whether such a product is commercially available, I think you're on the right track. I think an aluminized coating would be much more reflective than chrome plating. I have seen inexpensive mylar balloons that are aluminized and, although neither the durability nor rigidity would be great, perhaps you could just fasten the aluminized mylar to a transparent polycarbonate disc.


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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey
Striving to live "Aloha"

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