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A dry yet astonishing demo: Mark Shaw at TED2013 (with animated gif)

Posted by: Thu-Huong Ha
Photo: James Duncan Davidson

Photo: James Duncan Davidson

Imagine driving through a downpour and coming out with a dry car.

Mark Shaw produces Ultra Ever-Dry, a liquid-repellent coating that may sound mundane but makes for one astonishing demo. The superhydrophobic coating acts as a shield against pretty much any liquids. When the coating is applied to a surface, it coats it with nanoparticles, which are, surprisingly, not super-smooth but rough and craggy. The spaces between the crags grab onto air particles so that a layer of air now covers the entire surface, and whatever hits the surface — dirt, oil, paint — just bounces right off. The applications are endless: anti-wetting, anti-icing, anti-corrosion, anti-bacterial, self-cleaning, the list goes on.

GIF by Lil Chen Photos: James Duncan Davidson

GIF by Lil Chen
Photos: James Duncan Davidson

Watch Ultra Ever-Dry in action »

Mark Shaw’s demo is now available for viewing. Watch it on TED.com»