A water repellent developed by researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory outperforms nature at its best and could open a floodgate of commercial possibilities.
The super-water repellent (superhydrophobic) material, developed by John Simpson, is easy to fabricate and uses inexpensive base materials. The patent-pending process could lead to the creation of a new class of water repellant products, including windshields, eyewear, clothing, building materials, road surfaces, ship hulls and self-cleaning coatings. The list of likely applications is virtually endless.
"My goal was to make the best possible water repellent surface," Simpson said. "What I developed is a glass powder coating material with remarkable properties that cause water-based solutions to bounce off virtually any coated surface."