Spiders and ants inspire metal that won’t sink

Researchers, inspired by diving bell spiders and rafts of fire ants, have created a metallic structure that is so water repellent, it refuses to sink—no matter how often it is forced into water or how much it is damaged or punctured.

 

Could this lead to an unsinkable ship? A wearable flotation device that will still float after being punctured? Electronic monitoring devices that can survive in long term in the ocean? All of the above, says Chunlei Guo, professor of optics and physics, whose lab describes the structure in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces

 

.The structure uses a groundbreaking technique the lab developed for using femtosecond bursts of lasers to “etch” the surfaces of metals with intricate micro- and nanoscale patterns that trap air and make the surfaces superhydrophobic, or water repellent.

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.rochester.edu