Wetting and wetting transitions on copper-based super-hydrophobic surfaces

N. J. Shirtcliffe, G. McHale, M. I. Newton, C. C. Perry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Rough and patterned copper surfaces were produced using etching and, separately, using electrodeposition. In both of these approaches the roughness can be varied in a controlled manner and, when hydrophobized, these surfaces show contact angles that increase with increasing roughness to above 160degrees. We show transitions from a Wenzel mode, whereby the liquid follows the contours of the copper surface, to a Cassie-Baxter mode, whereby the liquid bridges between features on the surface. Measured contact angles on etched samples could be modeled quantitatively to within a few degrees by the Wenzel and Cassie-Baxter equations. The contact angle hysteresis on these surfaces initially increased and then decreased as the contact angle increased. The maximum occurred at a surface area where the equilibrium contact angle would suggest that a substantial proportion of the surface area was bridged.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)937-943
Number of pages7
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2005


  • superhydrophobic
  • Lotus effect
  • wetting


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