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This article describes the physics of superoleophobic surfaces, combining a recently developed free-energy approach and finite element modeling. We start by investigating the peculiar wetting behavior of such surfaces, originating in their “re-entrant” geometry, and discussing a specific mechanism for the “filling transition”, leading to the loss of superoleophobicity. We then focus on their friction properties, and establish an important condition for their use as super-lubricating surfaces. This new insight into the underlying mechanisms of superoleophobicity enables us to suggest general principles to optimize the wetting and friction properties of those promising surfaces.
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