Inspired by the self-cleaning lotus leaf, a facile method of fabricating superhydrophobic silica coated magnetite nanoparticles using a cost-effective process is presented in this work. The structural characterizations and magnetic properties of the obtained core-shell magnetic nanoparticles were characterized by means of X-ray diffraction (XRD), thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and vibrating sample magnetometer (VSM). TEM analysis revealed that the particles present flower‐like dendrimeric fibers morphology. The particles were uniformly dispersed on the surface of an epoxy resin coating with the purpose to increase the roughness and reduce the surface energy of the surface. The resulting superhydrophobic surface provides robust water-repellent surface under harsh conditions, thanks to its self-cleaning characteristic. The superhydrophobicity of this surface was confirmed based on the measurements of a water contact angle around 175°, which surpasses the theoretical limit of the superhydrophobicity. The simplicity and the cost-effectiveness of the process developed in this study appears to be a promising route for the preparation of other magnetic superhydrophobic organic-inorganic hybrid materials that would be beneficial in a wide variety of applications.

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Journal of Colloid and Interface Science

Volume 513, 1 March 2018, Pages 349-356