Water droplet behavior on superhydrophobic SiO2 nanocomposite films during icing/deicing cycles

A. Lazauskas, A. Guobiene, I. Prosycevas, V. Baltrusaitis, V. Grigaliunas, P. Narmontas, Jonas Baltrusaitis

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This work investigates water droplet behavior on superhydrophobic (water contact angle value of 162 ± 1°) SiO2 nanocomposite films subjected to repetitive icing/deicing treatments, changes in SiO2 nanocomposite film surface morphology and their non-wetting characteristics. During the experiment, water droplets on SiO2 nanocomposite film surface are subjected to a series of icing and deicing cycles in a humid (~ 70% relative humidity) atmosphere and the resulting morphological changes are monitored and characterized using atomic force microscopy (AFM) and contact angle measurements. Our data show that the formation of the frozen or thawed water droplet, with no further shape change, on superhydrophobic SiO2 nanocomposite film, is obtained faster within each cycle as the number of the icing/deicing cycles increases. After 10 icing and deicing cycles, the superhydrophobic SiO2 nanocomposite film had a water contact angle value of 146 ± 2° which is effectively non-superhydrophobic. AFM analysis showed that the superhydrophobic SiO2 nanocomposite film surface area under the water droplet undergoes gradual mechanical damage during the repetitive icing/deicing cycles. We propose a possible mechanism of the morphological changes to the film surface that take place during the consecutive icing/deicing experiments.
Original languageUndefined
Pages (from-to)9-16
JournalMaterials characterization
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2013


  • METIS-298641
  • IR-90025

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