Polymer Science Faculty Research

Title

Carbon Nanotube-Based Robust Steamphobic Surfaces

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-16-2011

Abstract

The wetting behavior of a surface under steam condensation depends on its intrinsic wettability and micrometer or nanoscale surface roughness. A typical superhydrophobic surface may not be suitable as a steamphobic surface because of the nucleation and growth of water inside the valleys and thus the failure to form an air-liquid-solid composite interface. Here, we present the results of steam condensation on chemically modified nanostructured carbon nanotube (CNT) mats. We used a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) process to modify the intrinsic wettability of nanostructured CNT mats. The combination of low surface energy achieved by PECVD and the nanoroughness of the surface provides a mechanism to retain the superhydrophobicity of the CNT mats under steam condensation. The ability to withstand steam temperature and pressure for as long as 10 h implies the remarkably improved stability of the superhydrophobic state of the surface. The thermodynamic calculations carried out using a unit cell model clearly explain the steamphobic wetting behavior of the surface.

Publication Title

Langmuir

Volume

27

Issue

24

First Page

14726

Last Page

14731