Development of Antifouling Surfaces to Reduce Bacterial Attachment
- N. C. Cady
- Soft Matter 2013,
We report the first experimental study on the modulation of adhesion force distribution by surface micro-patterns and its impact on particle attachment. The effect of substratum topography on particle adhesion was evaluated using well-defined microscopic surface patterns consisting of orthogonal arrays of cuboid pillars or pits with different sizes and spacing fabricated by the conventional photolithography and reactive ion etching (RIE). Adhesion of carboxyl modified poly(styrene-co-acrylic-acid) particles of 6 μm in diameter under favorable deposition conditions was found to be markedly lower on all the micro-patterned surfaces compared with that on the smooth control surface, and particle adhesion depended on the characteristic dimensions of the surface micro-structures relative to the particle size. Particle adhesion was minimal when the pillar cross-sectional dimension was below a critical value close to the diameter of the particle while the spacing between pillars was less important. Meanwhile, particles adhered displayed unique distribution on the micro-patterned surfaces. The majority of particles preferentially adhered on or close to the edge of the pillars (in the valley). Atomic force microscopy measurements using a colloidal probe revealed that the surface features strongly modulated the spatial and probability distribution of adhesion forces on the micro-patterned surfaces. Micro-sized pillars changed the adhesion force probability distribution from monomodal to bimodal, with significantly reduced maximum adhesion force. This was hypothesized to be responsible for the reduced total particle adhesion.