Tunable wettability in surface-modified ZnO-based hierarchical nanostructures

Gongping Li*, Tao Chen, Bin Yan, Yun Ma, Zhou Zhang, Ting Yu, Zexiang Shen, Hongyu Chen, Tom Wu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations


Designing geometrical structures and making chemical modifications are two effective routes to tailor wettability. ZnO-based hierarchical nanostructures, in particular, vertically aligned nanoneedles and nanonails were employed as a platform to study the effect of surface morphology. The hydrophobicity and the variation of contact angle in the as-grown samples were attributed to the combined effects of surface roughness and partial water-solid contact. Subsequent chemical modifications with stearic acid led to superhydrophobic ZnO surfaces, while annealing in air resulted into superhydrophilicity. Under the alternations of coating and removal of stearic acid, reversible transitions between superhydrophilicity and hydrophobicity were realized.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number173104
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number17
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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