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Original Articles Open Access
A low wettability surface with a water contact angle of 167° and a tilting angle of 1.5° was fabricated on aluminum substrates by electrolysis plasma treatment using a mixed electrolytes of C6H5O7(NH4)3 and Na2SO4, followed by fluorination. To optimize the fabrication conditions, several important processing parameters such as the discharge voltage, the discharge time, the concentrations of supporting electrolyte and stearic acid ethanol solution were examined systematically. Using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to analyze surface morphology, micrometer scale pits, and protrusions were found on the surface, with numerous nanometer mastoids contained in the protrusions. These binary micro/nano-scale structures, which are similar to the micro-structures of soil-burrowing animals, play an important role in achieving low wettability properties. Otherwise, the low wettability behaviors of the resulting aluminum surfaces are analyzed by surface roughness measuring instrument, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), electron probe micro-analyzer (EPMA), optical contact angle meter (CA), and digital Vickers micro-hardness (HV) tester. The results show that the electrolysis plasma treatment is highly efficient and environmental friendly. Under the optimized conditions, the contact angle for the modified low wettability surface is up to 167°, the sliding angle (SA) is less than 2°, roughness of the sample surface is only 0.6μm. As well as, HV is 385.
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Author(s): Dong Xiaojuan Meng Jianbing Wei Xiuting and Yin Zhanmin
Electrolysis plasma treatment, Low wettability surfaces, Aluminum substrates