Stretchable superhydrophobic elastomers with on-demand tunable wettability for droplet manipulation and multi-stage reaction

Xiaohong Ding, Yunchi Cai, Guofei Lu, Jiapeng Hu, Jinyun Zhao, Longhui Zheng, Zixiang Weng, Huanyu Cheng, Jing Lin, Lixin Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Superhydrophobic surfaces with tunable wettability are critical for miniaturized reaction systems with promising applications in point-of-care diagnostics, liquid droplet micro-reactors, non-loss manipulation, and surface-enhanced Raman scattering sensing. However, the design and demonstration of stretchable superhydrophobic surfaces with on-demand transitions in wettability remain challenging. In this study, we report a facile approach to fabricating stretchable superhydrophobic surfaces with different microstructures (arc-shaped or V-shaped air pockets) for multi-stage liquid droplet micro-reactors. The surfaces with arc-shaped air pockets are kept in the stable Cassie-Baxter state enabling droplet micro-reactions, whereas the surfaces with V-shaped air pockets that go through pressure-induced Cassie-Baxter to Wenzel transitions facilitate the transport of droplets in between reactions. The low-cost and scalable fabrication method with the effective design strategy provided by this work also paves the way for broad applications that range from liquid droplet micro-reactors and manipulations to chemical detection and analysis in stretchable microfluidic devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10069-10078
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry C
Issue number29
StatePublished - Jun 26 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry

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