“That’s what happens on most surfaces.” The material his team developed is far more versatile and, he hopes, will be available in the next couple of years.
surface science and what are its potential applications?
So different liquids like water, oils, and alcohol will not spread on the surface.
Plus, the droplets of liquid can just slide off the surface very rapidly, which makes them very easy to clean.
A lot of the work in the repellant area has been on textured surfaces.
These are rough surfaces that trap pockets of air under different liquids.
It allows us to look at different polymers and different fillers and find out which ones are likely to have similar properties. Say I use the coating on my i Phone — when would I need to reapply it? It’s based on urethane, which is a rubbery material, so it kind of feels like a stiff rubber coating. We’re actively working on getting surfaces like these to market.
It allows us to predict which might be the best substances. Regarding how long it would last, it depends on exact formulation, but we’re hoping for something on the order of a year. We’re working with a startup, Hygratek, which I co-founded, to get this to market within the next one to two years.
Do we know for a fact that this won’t have any health effects? The molecule used in this paper contains fluorine, and there’s a lot of data that we have on how it’s not toxic.
 It’s useful for refrigeration, too — anywhere there’s a phase change or anything that comes from a vapor to a liquid, there’s condensation, this would be relevant and help save energy.
You said these surfaces don’t exist in nature, but what would be the closest naturally occurring material that has these properties?
The first, and obvious answer, is to keep our hands themselves free of grime.
But there may be another option: self-cleaning coatings created by materials scientists.Dark asphalt soaks up rays from the sun, exacerbating the problems of a warming climate.