Good news for the safety of electronics, especially with regards to their potential exposure to liquids.
Sometimes our phones end up in the toilet bowl, or laptops end up covered in tea. It happens.
But if they were coated with an ‘omniphobic’ material, like the one created by a team of University of Michigan researchers, your devices would be a lot more likely to come out unscathed.
This everything-proof material works by combining fluorinated polyurethane and fluorodecyl polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (F-POSS).
F-POSS has an extremely low surface energy, which means that things don’t stick to it.
The coating developed by the team stands out from other similar materials because of the clever way these two ingredients work together, forming a more durable product.
“In the past, researchers might have taken a very durable substance and a very repellent substance and mixed them together,” Tuteja said.
“But this doesn’t necessarily yield a durable, repellent coating.”
But these two materials have combined so well, they ended up with a durable coating that can repeal everything – oil, water, or anything else the researchers threw at it.
Although this all sounds amazing, this incredible coating won’t be available quite yet – F-POSS is rare and expensive right now, although that is changing as manufacturers scale up the product, which should lower the cost.