Moisture Harvesting on Plant Surfaces

Fog Collection on Plant surfaces and Biomimetic Applications

‘The United Nations World Water Development Report 4’reported the scarcity of fresh water for about one billion people in the world; mostly in dry regions. However, certain arid regions, with a very little access to fresh water, e.g., fog desert Namib, Atacama etc. are characterized by intense fog.It can be an alternative sustainable fresh water resource for the people living in this climatic condition. Insufficient efficiency of existing technologies, e.g., fog collecting meshes,demands the innovation of new technology.Inspired by efficient fog collection mechanisms of certain plant species the aim can be achieved (Ju et al 2012; Roth-Nebelsick et al 2012; Malik et al 2014). Based on the analyses of about 20,000 plant species by our working group, in contrast to superhydrophobic plant surfaces, we concentrate on some model superhydrophilic and hierarchically structured plant species, prone to collect fog efficiently.Thus, we try to understand their micro and nanostructures, and surface wettability behind their fog collection mechanisms. Our research aims to develop superior/novel designs for optimized biomimetic fog collectors. One of our recent studies (Azad et al 2015a) shows the influence of different microstructures and superhydrophilic surface chemistry of sample surfaces. Another study (Azad et al 2015b) shows the hierarchical surface architecture of plants along with superhydrophilicity as an inspiration for biomimetic fog collectors.

Literature on Lotus-Effect, Salvinia-Effect and Bionics