Quantum vacuum photon modes and superhydrophobicity

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    Abstract

    Nanostructures are commonly used for developing superhydrophobic surfaces. However, available wetting theoretical models ignore the effect of vacuum photon-mode alteration on van der Waals forces and thus on hydrophobicity. Using first-principles calculations, we show that superhydrophibicity of nanostructured surfaces is dramatically enhanced by vacuum photon-mode tuning. As a case study, wetting contact angles of a water droplet above a polyethylene nanostructured surface are obtained from the interaction potential energy calculated as a function of the droplet-surface separation distance. This new approach could pave the way for the design of novel superhydrophobic coatings.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number024501
    Number of pages5
    JournalPhysical review letters
    Volume114
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 14 Jan 2015

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