American Chemical Society
am0c02014_si_005.mp4 (3.63 MB)

Passive Removal of Highly Wetting Liquids and Ice on Quasi-Liquid Surfaces

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posted on 2020-04-17, 16:52 authored by Lei Zhang, Zongqi Guo, Jyotirmoy Sarma, Xianming Dai
Surfaces with ultralow adhesion to liquids and solids have attracted broad interests in both fundamental studies and engineering applications from passive removal of highly wetting liquids and water harvesting to anti-/de-icing. The current state-of-the-art superomniphobic surfaces (rely on air lubricant) and liquid-infused surfaces (rely on liquid lubricant) suffer from severe issues for liquid repellency and ice removal: air/liquid lubricant loss or topography damage. Here, we create a durable quasi-liquid surface by tethering flexible polymer on various solid substrates. The untethered end of the polymer has mobile chains that behave like a liquid layer and greatly reduce the interfacial adhesion between the surface and foreign liquids/solids. Such a quasi-liquid surface with a 30.1 nm flexible polymer layer shows ultralow contact angle hysteresis (≤1.0°) to liquids regardless of their surface tensions. The highly wetting perfluorinated liquids like FC72 and Krytox101, as well as complex fluids like urine and crude oil, can be repelled from the surface. Moreover, wind can remove accreted ice from the surface in harsh conditions due to the negligible ice adhesion. We have demonstrated that the quasi-liquid surface shows robust performances in repelling highly wetting liquids, harvesting water, and removing ice, respectively.