Rendering SiO2/Si Surfaces Omniphobic by Carving Gas-Entrapping Microtextures Comprising Reentrant and Doubly Reentrant Cavities or Pillars.

Sankara Arunachalam, Eddy M Domingues, Ratul Das, Jamilya Nauruzbayeva, Ulrich Buttner, Ahad Syed, Himanshu Mishra

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We present microfabrication protocols for rendering intrinsically wetting materials repellent to liquids (omniphobic) by creating gas-entrapping microtextures (GEMs) on them comprising cavities and pillars with reentrant and doubly reentrant features. Specifically, we use SiO2/Si as the model system and share protocols for two-dimensional (2D) designing, photolithography, isotropic/anisotropic etching techniques, thermal oxide growth, piranha cleaning, and storage towards achieving those microtextures. Even though the conventional wisdom indicates that roughening intrinsically wetting surfaces (θo < 90°) renders them even more wetting (θr < θo < 90°), GEMs demonstrate liquid repellence despite the intrinsic wettability of the substrate. For instance, despite the intrinsic wettability of silica θo ≈ 40° for the water/air system, and θo ≈ 20° for the hexadecane/air system, GEMs comprising cavities entrap air robustly on immersion in those liquids, and the apparent contact angles for the droplets are θr > 90°. The reentrant and doubly reentrant features in the GEMs stabilize the intruding liquid meniscus thereby trapping the liquid-solid-vapor system in metastable air-filled states (Cassie states) and delaying wetting transitions to the thermodynamically-stable fully-filled state (Wenzel state) by, for instance, hours to months. Similarly, SiO2/Si surfaces with arrays of reentrant and doubly reentrant micropillars demonstrate extremely high contact angles (θr ≈ 150°-160°) and low contact angle hysteresis for the probe liquids, thus characterized as superomniphobic. However, on immersion in the same liquids, those surfaces dramatically lose their superomniphobicity and get fully-filled within
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of visualized experiments : JoVE
Issue number156
StatePublished - Mar 3 2020

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