Bioinspired spindle-knotted fibers with a strong water-collecting ability from a humid environment

Yuan Chen, Lin Wang, Yan Xue, Yongmei Zheng, Lei Jiang

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48 Citations (Scopus)


We fabricate a bioinspired spindle-knotted fiber (BSF) via an improved method of Rayleigh instability break-up droplets. The BSF is composed of multi-level spindle-knots that can generate continuous gradients of surface energy and different Laplace pressures. We investigate the water collecting ability of BSF under humid environments and observe how the spindle-knots collect water from the environmental humidity by means of cooperative driving forces resulting from individual spindle-knots. We reveal that the multi-level spindle-knots of BSF may play a role in water collection compared with uniform fibers without any spindle-knots. We demonstrate that the size effect of a spindle-knot is related to the capillary adhesion of hanging-drops, thus BSF has a much higher water collection efficiency in humid environments than normal uniform fibers. The mechanism is elucidated further to open a model of high efficiency materials for water collection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11450-11454
Number of pages5
JournalSoft Matter
Issue number45
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes

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