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Fog-Harvesting Properties of Dryopteris marginata: Role of Interscalar Microchannels in Water-Channeling

School of Basic Sciences and Advanced Materials Research Center, Indian Institute of Technology Mandi, Kamand, Mandi 175005, Himachal Pradesh, India
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Biomimetics 2018, 3(2), 7;
Received: 4 January 2018 / Revised: 31 March 2018 / Accepted: 9 April 2018 / Published: 12 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioinspired Microfluidics)
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Several flora and fauna species found in arid areas have adapted themselves to collect water by developing unique structures and to intake the collected moisture. Apart from the capture of the moisture and fog on the surface, water transport and collection both play an important part in fog-harvesting systems as it prevents the loss of captured water through evaporation and makes the surface available for the capture of water again. Here, we report the remarkable fog collection and water-channeling properties of Dryopteris marginata. The surface of D. marginata has developed an integrated system of multiscale channels so that the water spreads quickly and is transported via these channels very efficiently. These integrated multiscale channels have also been replicated using a facile soft lithography technique to prepare biomimetic surfaces and it has been proved that it is the surface architecture that plays a role in the water transport rather than the material’s properties (waxes present on the surface of the leaves). Based on our studies, we infer that the microlevel hierarchy of the structures make the surface hydrophilic and the multiscale channels allow the efficient passage and transport of water. The understanding of the efficient and well-directed water transport and collection in D. marginata is expected to provide valuable insights to design efficient surfaces for fog-harvesting applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: fog-harvesting; water-channeling; biomimetics; soft lithography fog-harvesting; water-channeling; biomimetics; soft lithography

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Sharma, V.; Balaji, R.; Krishnan, V. Fog-Harvesting Properties of Dryopteris marginata: Role of Interscalar Microchannels in Water-Channeling. Biomimetics 2018, 3, 7.

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