Scientists Create New Material that Could Replicate Lotus Leaf
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Scientists have created a new low cost, non–toxic material that could mimic the lotus leaf to repel water droplets. They say that the superhydrophobic nanomaterial can be applied to a variety of surfaces via spray or spin coating.
The hydrocarbon material could help create environment–friendly waterproof surfaces that might replace hazardous fluorocarbons used for superhydrophobic applications. According to the researchers, the lotus leaf’s ability to repel water stems from its hierarchy of microscopic and a nanoscale double structure is because the lotus leaf has papillae within its epidermis and epicuticular waxes on top.
Scientists, too, in their material mimicked the papillae by creating a microstructure through the agglomeration of alumina nanoparticles. They simulated the effect of epicuticular waxes by creating hyperbranched organic moieties. The study was published in the journal ACS’ Applied Materials and Interfaces.