Durability + Design

Building Performance and Aesthetics

A Product of Technology Publishing
JPCL/PaintSquare | D+D | Paint BidTracker

D+D 2014
Register Now for D+D 2014

Paint and Coatings Industry News

Main News Page


Lotus Leaf Inspires a Fog-free Finish

Thursday, August 2, 2012

More items for Coatings Technology

Comment | More

Chinese scientists have developed a fog-free, self-cleaning glass coating with a structure that mimics that of the lotus leaf—and takes a page from the raspberry, too.

The coating, by researchers at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, imparts a “clear, slick, water-repellant surface” to glass and other transparent materials.

 Ralf Pfeifer/ Wikimedia Commons

 Ralf Pfeifer/ Wikimedia Commons

The lotus leaf’s superhydrophobic surfaces excel at repelling water and boast other “smart” self-cleaning, anti-glare, anti-icing, and anti-corrosion properties, scientists say.

The scientists say they were inspired by the leaf’s water-repellent and other properties. The coating also employs hollow silica nanoparticles that resemble raspberries, they said.

Tomorrow’s Materials

The coating holds potential for tomorrow’s materials, the team reports.

By “modifying low-surface-energy materials and creating surface textures on them, surfaces can be made to exhibit completely different wetting characteristics—either repelling or attracting moisture,” according to the American Institute of Physics (AIP), which published the research in Applied Physics Letters.

The research is described in “Transparent superhydrophobic/superhydrophilic coatings for self-cleaning and anti-fogging.” 

The article notes that superhydrophobic surfaces have demonstrated important self-cleaning, antireflection and anti-icing properties. Superhydrophilic surfaces, meanwhile, provide antireflection and anti-fog properties.

 Applied Physics Letters

 Applied Physics Letters

Two views (a and b) show the fogging differences between coated superhydrophilic glass and bare glass. The bottom row shows the fogging differences between (c) superhydrophobic glass and (d) bare glass.

“Recently,” the team notes, “there have been increasing interest in multifunctional transparent superhydrophobic or superhydrophilic films displaying antireflection or anti-fog, which can greatly extend their utility in the fields such as windshields, solar cell, and optical devices.”

‘Fog-Free Performance’

In the current experiments, the finished surfaces exhibited good anti-fogging and light-transmittance properties before and after chemical modification, the authors say.

The “results reveal that evaporation rate of the fog on superhydrophobic surfaces can be tremendously improved,” the team writes.

That could mean “clearer, fog-free performance” for windshields, windows, solar cells and panels, LEDs, TVs, tablets, and cell phone screens.

Such “smart coatings” are highly desirable, especially for solar cells and panels, which frequently lose up to 40% of their efficiency to dust and dirt buildup within a year of installation, the AIP said.

The next challenge for the scientists: move the smart surfaces from the lab to industry in a cost-efficient manner, the AIP said.

   

Tagged categories: Coatings technology; Glass coatings; Research; Self-cleaning coatings

Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

Coatings For Industry, Inc.
For Tough Environments,
The Toughest Protection

A workplace exposed to vehicle traffic, fuel, and other harsh chemicals needs a floor coating that stands up to daily abuse. Wearcoat 100 high-build polyurethane provides superior protection.


Durability + Design (D+D)
Be There!
May 20-22

Network with the emerging technical community of specifiers, architects, contractors, and facility owners at the first Building Performance Conference.


Insulating Coatings Corporation (Astec)
Seamles - Durable - Pliable
Green Building Qualified

With ASTEC Re-Ply™ Cool Roof Systems you can save your roof, save money and help save the planet! Why pay to replace your roof when you can Re-Ply™ it? 1.800.223.8494


KTA-Tator, Inc. - Corporate Office
KTA Inspection Services

Determine Specification Compliance:
• Surface Preparation
• Moisture Content
• Paint Materials & Application
• Aesthetics
Contact:
Kevin Brown, 336-874-2651
Corporate:
1-800-245-6379 x208


HydeTools, Inc.
Best Spray System on the Market

For a limited time only, get 50% off the HYDE® RVT® Spray System – pole, gun and lightweight spray head! • Saves time • Extends your reach • Less cleanup!


Duro-Last Roofing, Inc.
The Proven Performer!

Custom-fabricated, single-ply commercial roofing system. Watertight, highly reflective, resistant to chemicals, fire and high winds. Virtually maintenance-free!


DuPont Building Innovations
DuPont™ Tyvek® Fluid Applied WB System

The DuPont™ Tyvek® Fluid Applied System was put to the test at the Ronald McDonald House®. Click to see the results.

 
 
 
Technology Publishing

The Technology Publishing Network

The Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings (JPCL) PaintSquare
Durability + Design Paint BidTracker JPCL Europe

 
EXPLORE D+D:      Interact   |   Blogs   |   Resources   |   Buying Guides   |   Webinars   |   White Papers   |   Classifieds
GET D+D:      Subscribe   |   Advertising Media Kit
KNOW D+D:      About D+D   |   Privacy policy   |   Terms & conditions   |   Site Map   |   Search   |   Contact Us
 

© Copyright 2010-2014, Technology Publishing, Co., All rights reserved
2100 Wharton Street, Suite 310, Pittsburgh PA 15203-1951; Tel 1-412-431-8300; Fax 1-412-431-5428; E-mail webmaster@paintsquare.com