Reversible wettability control of silicon nanowire surfaces: From superhydrophilicity to superhydrophobicity

Jungmok Seo, Soonil Lee, Heetak Han, Youngwon Chung, Jaehong Lee, Sung Dae Kim, Young Woon Kim, Sangwoo Lim, Taeyoon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Bio-inspired superhydrophobic surfaces have attracted considerable attention due to their potential applications. Although various techniques to fabricate artificial superhydrophobic surfaces have been demonstrated, most of the methods lack water adherence or controllable wetting properties of the surfaces, which hinders their practical usage. In this paper, we present a simple approach to fabricate water-adhesive superhydrophobic silicon nanowire (Si NW) surfaces by applying a thermal annealing treatment in oxygen ambient. The Si NW arrays were fabricated using a metal assisted chemical etching method. After the cycled rapid thermal annealing (RTA) process at 1000 C under oxygen ambient, the water contact angle of the Si NW surface changed dramatically from 0 to 154.3 with high water-adhesive properties. This drastic change of the wettability could be attributed to the formed siloxane groups (- Si-O-Si-) on the thermally-treated Si NW surfaces; H2O is released from two adjacent silanol groups (-Si-O-H) to form siloxane groups during the RTA process. When the annealed Si NW was exposed in air, the wettability of the superhydrophobic Si NW was reconverted due to the re-formation of silanol groups (-Si-O-H). The wettability conversion of Si NW between superhydrophilic and superhydrophobic was repeated with good reversibility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-185
Number of pages7
JournalThin Solid Films
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jan 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported in part by the Converging Research Center Program through the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology ( 2012K001321 ) and by the Priority Research Centers Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology ( 2012–0006689 ). This work was also supported by National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean government (MEST) (no. 2011-0028594 ).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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