Robust Superhydrophobic Graphene-Based Composite Coatings with Self-Cleaning and Corrosion Barrier Properties

Md J. Nine, Martin A. Cole, Lucas Johnson, Diana N.H. Tran, Dusan Losic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

242 Citations (Scopus)


Superhydrophobic surfaces for self-cleaning applications often suffer from mechanical instability and do not function well after abrasion/scratching. To address this problem, we present a method to prepare graphene-based superhydrophobic composite coatings with robust mechanicalstrength, self-cleaning, and barrier properties. A suspension has been formulated that contains a mixture of reduced graphene oxide (rGO) and diatomaceous earth (DE) modified with polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) that can be applied on any surface using common coating methods such as spraying, brush painting, and dip coating. Inclusion of TiO2 nanoparticles to the formulation shows further increase in water contact angle (WCA) from 159 ± 2° to 170 ± 2° due to thestructural improvement with hierarchical surface roughness. Mechanicalstability and durability of the coatings has been achieved by using a commercial adhesive to bond the superhydrophobic "paint" to various substrates. Excellent retention of superhydrophobicity was observed even after sandpaper abrasion and crosscut scratching. A potentiodynamic polarizationstudy revealed excellent corrosion resistance (96.78%) properties, and an acid was used to provide further insight into coating barrier properties. The ease of application and remarkable properties of this graphene-based composite coating show considerable potential for broad application as a self-cleaning and protective layer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28482-28493
Number of pages12
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number51
Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • barrier coating
  • diatomaceous earth
  • graphene
  • graphene coatings
  • self-cleaning
  • superhydrophobic surface


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