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Issue 10, 2006
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Wetting and anti-wetting on aligned carbon nanotube films

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This review covers recent advances in the wettability of aligned carbon nanotubes (ACNT). Carbon nanotubes (CNT) are inherently somewhat hydrophilic, with a water contact angle of less than 86°. When they are arranged in a textured manner on substrates having different surface topographies, different wettabilities are exhibited. These range from hydrophilic to hydrophobic, and even superhydrophobic, and with isotropic to anisotropic contact angle (CA) hysteresis. If chemical modification is involved, the wettability can be adjusted from superhydrophobic to superhydrophilic on a certain structured ACNTs. Here, we first examine the structural influence of isotropic roughness on this effect (including nano-structures and hierarchical structures), where isotropic wetting (including wetting and anti-wetting) is observed. Water can wet the nano-structured CNT alignment, resulting in self-assembly; on the other hand, superhydrophobicity is durable on hierarchical and chemically-modified nano-structured alignments. Secondly, the effects of anisotropic roughness on wetting behavior are discussed. Finally, we suggest the remaining challenges in the field, and several practical applications of ACNT possessing special wettability.

Graphical abstract: Wetting and anti-wetting on aligned carbon nanotube films

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Publication details

The article was received on 12 May 2006, accepted on 14 Jul 2006 and first published on 04 Aug 2006

Article type: Review Article
DOI: 10.1039/B606654B
Citation: Soft Matter, 2006,2, 811-821
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    Wetting and anti-wetting on aligned carbon nanotube films

    H. Liu, J. Zhai and L. Jiang, Soft Matter, 2006, 2, 811
    DOI: 10.1039/B606654B

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