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J Phys Chem B. 2009 Mar 26;113(12):3906-9.

Contact angle hysteresis generated by strong dilute defects.

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Physique et Mécanique des Milieux Hétérogènes, UMR 7636 du CNRS, ESPCI, Paris, France.


Water on solid decorated with hydrophobic defects (such as micropillars) often stays at the top of the defects in a so-called fakir state, which explains the superhydrophobicity observed in such case, provided that the density of defects is small enough. Here we show that this situation provides an ideal frame for studying the contact angle hysteresis; the phase below the liquid is "perfect" and slippery (it is air), contrasting with pillars' tops whose edges form strong pining sites for the contact line. This model system thus allows us to study the hysteresis as a function of the density of defects and to compare it to the classical theory by Joanny and de Gennes, which is based on very similar hypothesis.


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