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Adv Colloid Interface Sci. 2012 Nov 1;179-182:107-13. doi: 10.1016/j.cis.2012.06.006. Epub 2012 Jun 29.

Is adhesion superficial? Silicon wafers as a model system to study van der Waals interactions.

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Department of Experimental Physics, Saarland University, 66041 Saarbrücken, Germany.


Adhesion is a key issue for researchers of various fields, it is therefore of uppermost importance to understand the parameters that are involved. Commonly, only surface parameters are employed to determine the adhesive forces between materials. Yet, van der Waals forces act not only between atoms in the vicinity of the surface, but also between atoms in the bulk material. In this review, we describe the principles of van der Waals interactions and outline experimental and theoretical studies investigating the influence of the subsurface material on adhesion. In addition, we present a collection of data indicating that silicon wafers with native oxide layers are a good model substrate to study van der Waals interactions with coated materials.

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