Soft, wet, and sticky: Viscous forces and elasticity in adhesion

Colloquium | October 23 | 4-6 p.m. | 180 Tan Hall

 Joelle Frechette, Professor, John Hopkins University

 College of Chemistry

Understanding and harnessing the coupling between lubrication pressure, elasticity, and surface interactions provides materials design strategies for applications such as adhesives, coatings, microsensors, and biomaterials. This presentation will discuss our efforts to understand how soft materials make contact and adhere under dynamic conditions in fluid environments. Measurements of interactions between soft surfaces will show how elastic films deform due to viscous forces and influence adhesion. In particular, we will discuss conditions under which elasticity favors both dynamic and static adhesion in fluid environments. In the second part of the presentation, we will show practical implications for adhesives on soft surfaces such as skin. More specifically, we will discuss how the presence of water influences contact formation and the performance of adhesives. We will also show qualitative differences in debonding mechanism caused by the elasticity of the substrate.

 pollyn@berkeley.edu, 510-643-3987