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Underwater Sustainability of the ``Cassie'' State of Wetting

Bobji, Musuvathi S and Kumar, S Vijay and Asthana, Ashish and Govardhan, Raghuraman N (2009) Underwater Sustainability of the ``Cassie'' State of Wetting. In: Langmuir, 25 (20). pp. 12120-12126.

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Official URL: http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/la902679c


A rough hydrophobic surface when immersed in water can result in a ``Cassie'' state of wetting in which the water is in contact with both the solid surface and the entrapped air. The sustainability of the entrapped air on such surfaces is important for underwater applications such as reduction of flow resistance in microchannels and drag reduction of submerged bodies such as hydrofoils. We utilize an optical technique based oil total internal reflection of light at the water-air interface to quantify the spatial distribution of trapped air oil such a surface and its variation with immersion time. With this technique, we evaluate the sustainability of the Cassie state on hydrophobic surfaces with four different kinds of textures. The textures studied are regular arrays of pillars, ridges, and holes that were created in silicon by a wet etching technique, and also a texture of random craters that was obtained through electrodischarge machining of aluminum. These surfaces were rendered hydrophobic with a self-assembled layer Of fluorooctyl trichlorosilane. Depending on the texture, the size and shape of the trapped air pockets were found to vary. However, irrespective of the texture, both the size and the number of air pockets were found to decrease with time gradually and eventually disappear, suggesting that the sustainability of the ``Cassie'' state is finite for all the microstructures Studied. This is possibly due to diffusion of air from the trapped air pockets into the water. The time scale for disappearance of air pockets was found to depend on the kind of microstructure and the hydrostatic pressure at the water-air interface. For the surface with a regular array of pillars, the air pockets were found to be in the form of a thin layer perched on top of the pillars with a large lateral extent compared to the spacing between pillars. For other surfaces studied, the air pockets are smaller and are of the same order as the characteristic length scale of the texture. Measurements for the surface with holes indicate that the time for air-pocket disappearance reduces as the hydrostatic pressure is increased.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Langmuir
Publisher: American Chemical Society
Additional Information: Copyright for this article belongs to American Chemical Society.
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Mechanical Engineering
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2010 05:41
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2010 05:52
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/24812

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