Inderscience Publishers

Micro and nano structuring and texturing of polymers using plasma processes: potential manufacturing applications

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We review our recent work on the deterministic (top down) micro/nano structuring and stochastic (random) micro/nano texturing of polymeric materials for a variety of applications. We create polymeric microfludics/microsystems using plasma processing as well as 'smart' polymer surfaces with controlled wetting and optical properties. First, fabrication of polymeric micro-nanosystems and microfluidics using standard photolithography followed by plasma etching is proposed as an alternative method for polymer microfabrication. Second, plasma induced polymer nanoroughening (nanotexturing) is proposed as an extremely attractive methodology to control the wetting properties of polymers and create superhydrophilic or hydrophobic or robust superhydrophobic polymer surfaces. These surfaces may in addition possess controlled optical properties, such as antireflectance combined with good transmittance. Third, ordered spontaneously formed structures are created on plasma processed polymers. Potential applications are discussed.

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