Surface properties have critical roles in determination of the durability and overall performance of polymeric materials for applications in many fields. Recent investigations on naturally superhydrophobic surfaces such as plant leaves and insect wings have led to clear understanding ... of the close relationship between surface topography, roughness, chemical structure and superhydrophobicity. This understanding has led to a dramatic increase in research efforts on the preparation and characterisation of polymeric systems with superhydrophobic surfaces. Current and potential uses of such materials in a wide range of applications also make them very attractive in a commercial sense.
The main focus of this book is to provide a comprehensive overview of the new developments regarding the preparation and characterisation of superhydrophobic polymeric surfaces. Many methods used in preparation of robust and durable superhydrophobic polymer surfaces as well as their advantages and disadvantages are discussed. The close relationship between the polymer composition, hierarchical micro/nano surface topography and superhydrophobic behaviour are provided. In addition to practical aspects, special emphasis is given to discussion of the theoretical foundations of the wetting behaviour of rough surfaces.
Nature is the ultimate guide for preparation of functional materials and surfaces. As discussed in detail in this book, using biomimetic approaches it is possible to design and produce superhydrophobic surfaces with interesting functionalities. The most critical tasks for scientists and engineers working in the field seem to be to: (i) understand clearly the relationship between surface compositions, topography and surface properties; (ii) develop simple laboratory methods and commercially viable methods to produce superhydrophobic surfaces and devices mimicking natural systems; and (iii) demonstrate novel applications in research laboratories and develop commercial applications for these materials with smart and multifunctional surfaces.
We believe that this book will provide clear understanding of the theoretical foundations of superhydrophobicity together with practical experimental guidance for preparation of such polymeric surfaces to researchers and application engineers working in this exciting field.
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