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Exceptional Superhydrophobicity and Low Velocity Impact Icephobicity of Acetone-Functionalized Carbon Nanotube Films

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posted on 16.08.2011 by Liqiu Zheng, Zhongrui Li, Shawn Bourdo, Khedir R. Khedir, Madhu P. Asar, Charles C. Ryerson, Alexandru S. Biris
We present a simple method to produce carbon nanotube-based films with exceptional superhydrophobicity and impact icephobicity by depositing acetone-treated single-walled carbon nanotubes on glass substrates. This method is scalable and can be adopted for any substrate, both flexible and rigid. These films have indicated a high contact angle, in the vicinity of 170°, proved both by static and dynamic analysis processes. The dynamic evaporation studies indicated that a droplet deposited on the treated films evaporated in the constant contact angle mode for more than 80% of the total evaporation time, which is definitely a characteristic of superhydrophobic surfaces. Furthermore, the acetone-functionalized films showed a strong ability to mitigate ice accretion from supercooled water droplets (−8 °C), when the droplets were found to bounce off the films tilted at 30°. The untreated nanotube films did not indicate similar behavior, and the supercooled water droplets remained attached to the films’ surfaces. Such studies could be the foundation of highly versatile technologies for both water and ice mitigation.