Fabrication of Superhydrophobic Metal Surfaces for Anti-Icing Applications

J Vis Exp. 2018 Aug 15;(138):57635. doi: 10.3791/57635.


Several ways to produce superhydrophobic metal surfaces are presented in this work. Aluminum was chosen as the metal substrate due to its wide use in industry. The wettability of the produced surface was analyzed by bouncing drop experiments and the topography was analyzed by confocal microscopy. In addition, we show various methodologies to measure its durability and anti-icing properties. Superhydrophobic surfaces hold a special texture that must be preserved to keep their water-repellency. To fabricate durable surfaces, we followed two strategies to incorporate a resistant texture. The first strategy is a direct incorporation of roughness to the metal substrate by acid etching. After this surface texturization, the surface energy was decreased by silanization or fluoropolymer deposition. The second strategy is the growth of a ceria layer (after surface texturization) that should enhance the surface hardness and corrosion resistance. The surface energy was decreased with a stearic acid film. The durability of the superhydrophobic surfaces was examined by a particle impact test, mechanical wear by lateral abrasion, and UV-ozone resistance. The anti-icing properties were explored by studying the ability to repeal subcooled water, freezing delay, and ice adhesion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Video-Audio Media

MeSH terms

  • Freezing
  • Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions
  • Surface Properties*