ESR 6: Development of icephobic coatings of thin organic polymers using Initiated chemical vapor deposition

Graz University of Technology, Graz (Austria)

Researcher: Gabriel Hernandez

Supervisor: Anna Maria Coclite

Project goals:

The project will attempt to generate a new type of icephobic coatings based on polymer thin films deposited by initiated Chemical Vapor Deposition (iCVD). This method does not require a solvent which thus allows to easily obtain copolymers from monomers that have different solubilities, opening the door to versatile chemistries. A novel approach will be developed by using two chemistries (e.g. perfluorodecylacrylate and acrylamide, or alternative REACh compliant chemicals) and combining them in patterns or multilayer structures to reach a large range of wettability from low to high. Icephobicity on such surfaces will be tested during secondments.

The project will include different tasks:

Preliminary studies

  1. State of the art on discontinuity enhancement icephobicity.
  2. State of art on hydrophobic/hydrophilic coatings deposited by iCVD

Experimental developments

  1. Development of surfaces with a range of wettability from low to high.
  2. Analysis of wettability, morphology, mechanical and thermal properties.
  3. Combination of the coatings obtained in point 1 in patterns and multilayers.
  4. Analysis of wettability, morphology, mechanical and thermal properties.

Validation

  1. Development of prototypes
  2. Testing in an icing-wind tunnel and confrontation of experimental data with theoretical results.