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Towards Durable Hydrophobicity and Omniphobicity

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Micro and nanoengineered functional surfaces have recently received significant attention due to their ability to enhance the efficiency and performance of a variety of applications. Although demonstrated on the lab scale, the successful integration of these surfaces into systems has been slow due mainly to issues related to poor longevity, unproven scalability, and inability to handle working fluids having low surface tensions. Furthermore, the utilization of these surfaces in thermal domains has been even tougher due to the need to keep coatings ultra-thin to avoid adding parasitic thermal resistances. In this talk, I will discuss fundamental studies of hydrophobic and omniphobic surface durability during both water vapor condensation and a variety of fluid-surface interactions. Our studies provide key insights related to the design of smooth and rough functional surfaces and help pinpoint future breakthroughs needed to improve the robustness and implementation of hydrophobic and omniphobic coatings.

This talk is part of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Flows (IEEF) series.

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