Improving the Mechanical Durability of Superhydrophobic Coating by Deposition on to a Mesh Structure
Superhydrophobic surfaces (SHSs) require a combination of a rough nano- or microscale structured surface topography and a low surface energy. However, its superydrophobicity is easily lost, even under relatively mild mechanical abrasion, when the surface is mechanically weak. Here, we develop a method that significantly increases the mechanical durability of a superhydrophobic surface, by introducing a mesh layer beneath the superhydrophobic layer. The hardness, abrasion distance, flexibility and water-jet impact resistance all increase for the commercially available Ultra-ever Dry superhydrophobic coating. This is attributed to the increased mechanical durability offered by the mesh, whose construction not only increases the porosity of the SHS coating but acts as a third, larger structure, so that the superhydrophobic layer is now composed of a three-level hierarchical structure: the mesh, micropillars and nanoparticles.