Self-cleaning surfaces: The importance of a single groove

11 septiembre 2014

An innovative algorithm exposes the energy pathways that cause super-repellent surfaces to stop working. ‘Superhydrophobic’ surfaces, such as anti-icing or self-cleaning windows, are remarkably effective at repelling water molecules. However, they may suddenly — and dramatically — lose their superhydrophobic features. Researchers have now identified a cause for the widespread ‘wetting transition’ by pinpointing how infiltration of a single microscopic groove can cause such an event.