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Adv Mater. 2011 Jan 18;23(3):349-68. doi: 10.1002/adma.201001759. Epub 2010 Sep 2.

Surface wrinkling: a versatile platform for measuring thin-film properties.

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Polymers Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Gaithersburg, MD 20899, USA.


Surface instabilities in soft matter have been the subject of increasingly innovative research aimed at better understanding the physics of their formation and their utility in patterning, organizing, and measuring materials properties on the micro and nanoscale. The focus of this Review is on a type of instability pattern known as surface wrinkling, covering the general concepts of this phenomenon and several recent applications involving the measurement of thin-film properties. The ability of surface wrinkling to yield new insights into particularly challenging materials systems such as ultrathin films, polymer brushes, polyelectrolyte multilayer assemblies, ultrasoft materials, and nanoscale structured materials is highlighted. A perspective on the future directions of this maturing field, including the prospects for advanced thin-film metrology methods, facile surface patterning, and the control of topology-sensitive phenomena, such as wetting and adhesion, is also presented.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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