Hydrophobicity Print E-mail

Hydrophobicity, from the Greek words hydro=water and phobos=fear, is the concept of how certain molecules are repelled by water. As water consists of polar molecules (H2O), hydrophobic molecules tend to be non-polar. Lipids like fats, waxes, and vitamins are well-known hydrophobic substances.

 

The most common measurement for the hydrophobicity of a surface (repellency of a surface against water) which can also be calculated mathematically is the contact angle θ of a drop of water (with a pre-defined diameter) at the three phase boundary where the liquid, gas, and solid intersect. The higher the hydrophobicity of a surface, the higher the contact angle will be of a drop of water on that surface.

 

Usually, the contact angle of a drop of water on normal glass surfaces is around 20-30°. Surfaces are called hydrophobic if the contact angle of a drop of water is higher than 85°. Surfaces are called superhydrophobic if the contact angle is higher than 150° (allowing the water drop to form an almost perfect sphere).

 

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Contact angle θ = 25°
(normal glass)

Contact angle θ = 85°
(Ultraclean Glass™ after 10+ years of simulated wear)

Contact angle θ = 110°
(new Ultraclean Glass™)

 

 

Glass and porcelain surfaces treated with our Ultraclean Glass™ / Porcelain™ CONVERTER chemical display a contact angle of about 110° after application with an extremely high durability (see also our section on Durability).

Tests show that Ultraclean Glass™ / Ultraclean Porcelain™ remains hydrophobic even after 40,000 double-abrasion washing cycles with a hard brush (translating to a high-performance lifetime of at least 5 years under normal conditions). Ultraclean Glass™ will always be more hydrophobic than normal glass, even after decades of normal use, however the performance may eventually reduce (if the EVERSHIELD Lifetime Protection after-care program is not used).

 
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