Advanced Materials

Surface Wrinkles for Smart Adhesion


  • The authors thank Justin Turner and Steve Koback of Zygo Corporation for assistance and use of the Zygo NewView optical profiler in characterizing the wrinkled surface. E.J.S. thanks the NSF-MRSEC REU program for financial support. Funding for this research is provided by NSF CAREER Award DMR-0349078 and 3M Non-tenured Faculty Research Award.


A novel and highly scalable approach to generating a reusable, “smart” polymer adhesive based on surface wrinkling is presented. The wrinkling approach to patterning the polymer film is based on a combination of swelling and lateral confinement. The control of adhesion, or “smart” adhesion utilizes the mechanism of contact line splitting. This enhancement is controlled by the wrinkle wavelength, which is tuned by the degree of lateral confinement.

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