ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
Symmetrical Wrinkles in Single-Component Elastomers with Fingerprint-Inspired Robust Isotropic Dry Adhesive Capabilities
Ching-Hsun Lin, Ching-Yu Huang, Jui-Yuan Ho, Han-Yu Hsueh
Robust and inexpensive dry adhesives have a great potential in multitudinous industrial applications. However, to date, the fabrication of dry adhesives, prepared using high aspect ratio structures in general, requires specific equipment and time-consuming processes, which limit their practicable utilization. Inspired from human fingerprints, in this study, we created durable single-component elastomer surfaces with symmetric and multiple concentric-shaped wrinkled patterns that exhibit isotropic dry adhesion capabilities. The dynamic interfacial release-induced surface wrinkling property of a rigid degradable polymeric capping layer [i.e., poly(l-lactide) (PLLA)] was exploited on a soft elastomer substrate [i.e., polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)] to spontaneously form wrinkled PLLA/PDMS bilayer composites. After conducting a two-step thermal curing process on the composite and hydrolysis of the PLLA capping layer, a single-component microwrinkled PDMS surface with a large area and symmetric patterns could be generated. The patterns show flexible, durable, and isotropic dry adhesion capabilities that could be controlled by tuning their geometrical parameters (wrinkle wavelengths and amplitudes) and elastic modulus. In particular, the formation of symmetrically wrinkled patterns without using expensive lithography for patterning and costly material precursors is an advantage and could be extended to other industrial applications, such as damage-free transportation, biomimetic climbing robots, and biocompatible medical patches.