Self-propelled sweeping removal of dropwise condensate
Dropwise condensation can be enhanced by superhydrophobic surfaces on which the condensate drops spontaneously jump upon coalescence. However, the self-propelled jumping in prior reports is mostly perpendicular to the substrate. Here, we propose a substrate design with regularly spaced micropillars. Coalescence on the sidewalls of the micropillars leads to self-propelled jumping in a direction nearly orthogonal to the pillars and therefore parallel to the substrate. This in-plane motion in turn produces sweeping removal of multiple neighboring drops. The spontaneous sweeping mechanism may greatly enhance dropwise condensation in a self-sustained manner.
Qu, X; Boreyko, JB; Liu, F; Agapov, RL; Lavrik, NV; Retterer, ST; Feng, JJ; Collier, CP; Chen, CH
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