Novel platform for efficient water harvesting

A new study presents new patterned surface inspired by natural organisms, such as beetles and cactus thorns, for efficient water harvesting.

With the development of global industry and the increase of population, the shortage of freshwater resources has become a serious global challenge to the sustainable development of human society, prompting in-depth research on advanced water-harvesting technologies. Image source: vishnujayan - Pixabay (symbol image).

The patterned surface combines a superamphiphobic region and a triangular fluorosurfactant (capstone FS50)-modified hydrophilic region has been designed for efficient and rapid water collection and condensation. On the one hand, owing to a good hydrophilic property, the FS50-modified part efficiently collects fog droplets that are further condensed into much larger water droplets. On the other hand, many large water drops condensed on the superamphiphobic region easily roll onto the hydrophilic FS50-modified surface, and form much larger droplets when combined with the original ones.

Large water collection rate

The patterned surface achieves a very large water collection rate (WCR) of 20.6 mg min−1 cm−2, which is much larger than others reported in previous papers, while it is 1.5 and 1.3 times than that of single superamphiphobic and FS50-modified surfaces. Since both the patterns show superior oil repellency, it presents good resistance to organic pollution, resulting in very superior chemical stability and recyclability. Even after water collection for 60 cycles, the patterned surface can still reach a WCR value of 18 mg min−1 cm−2.

The study has been published in Journal of Coatings Technology and Research, Volume 20, Issue 6, November 2023.

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