From superhydrophobic to superhydrophilic surfaces tuned by surfactant solutions

Feng Ming Chang, Yu Jane Sheng, Hui Chen, Heng Kwong Tsao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


The wettability of hydrophobic surfaces is generally improved by surfactant solutions. The wetting behavior of superhydrophobic surfaces can be classified into two types, in terms of the variation of contact angle with surfactant concentration cs. Contact angle is controlled by surface tension for common linear surfactants and becomes independent of cs as cs >critical micelle concentration. Consequently, superhydrophobic surfaces remain in hydrophobic range, as reported. However, for branch-tailed surfactants such as sodium-bisethylhexylsulfosuccinate and didodecyldimethylammonium bromide, superhydrophobic surfaces can turn superhydrophilic by increasing cs owing to continuous reduction of solid-liquid interfacial tension. The superhydrophobicity is recoverable simply by water rinsing.

Original languageEnglish
Article number094108
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2007


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