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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/S34168/01
Title: Voltage switchable super-hydrophobicity
Principal Investigator: McHale, Professor G
Other Investigators:
Newton, Dr MI
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: School of Science & Technology
Organisation: Nottingham Trent University
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 05 January 2004 Ends: 04 January 2007 Value (£): 186,141
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Surfaces & Interfaces
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology Aerospace, Defence and Marine
No relevance to Underpinning Sectors
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
This proposal is for a study of electrowetting to modify the wetting of a surface from super-hydrophobic to hydrophilic and so control the motion of water droplets on the surface. Super-hydrophobicity is characterised by water drops with contact angles in excess of 160 degrees. In nature, some plants structure the surface of their leaves so that this chemical hydrophobicity is enhanced into super-hydrophobicity and recently a desert beetle has been shown to use super-hydrophobicity to collect drinking water from fog-laden wind. The physical enhancement of hydrophobicity into super-hydrophobicity can now be realized in the laboratory by creating rough or structured surfaces and providing them with chemically hydrophobic properties. In this project we seek to use electrowetting, the application of a voltage between a liquid drop and a substrate, to reduce in a prgrammable manner the apparent contact angle of a liquid on a superhydrophobic surface. We will examine how locally varying the surface topography and combining this with electrowetting can provide control of the motion of liquid drops. Should this be achieved it could be used to collect water via a condensation process or, alternatively, differences in contact angles could be used to move small droplets around a surface.
Key Findings
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Summary
Date Materialised
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Project URL: http://www.naturesraincoats.com/
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.ntu.ac.uk