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Adaptive Wetting of Polydimethylsiloxane

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posted on 18.06.2020, 21:43 authored by William S. Y. Wong, Lukas Hauer, Abhinav Naga, Anke Kaltbeitzel, Philipp Baumli, Rüdiger Berger, Maria D‘Acunzi, Doris Vollmer, Hans-Jürgen Butt
To better understand the wetting of cross-linked polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), we measured advancing and receding contact angles of sessile water drops on cross-linked PDMS as a function of contact line velocity (up to 100 μm/s). Three types of samples were investigated: pristine PDMS, PDMS where oligomers were removed by toluene treatment, and PDMS with an enriched concentration of oligomers. Depending on the velocity of advancing contact lines and the contact time with water, different modes of wetting were observed: one with a relatively low contact angle hysteresis (Δθ ≈ 10°) and one with a larger hysteresis. We attribute the low hysteresis state, called the lubricated state, to the enrichment of free oligomers at the water–PDMS interface. The enrichment of oligomers is induced by drop contact. The kinetics of the transition to the lubricated state can be described by adaptation theory. PDMS adapts to the presence of water by an enrichment of free oligomers at the interface and a correlated reduction in interfacial tension.

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