New research highlights cutting-edge anti-scaling performance of new coatings

May 31, 2017

Scale formation is a common problem in a wide range of industries such as oil and gas, water desalination, and food processing. Conventional solutions for this problem including mechanical removal and chemical dissolution are inefficient, costly, and sometimes environmentally hazardous. Surface modification approaches have shown promises to address this challenge. However, these approaches suffer from intrinsic existence of solid−liquid interfaces leading to high rate of scale nucleation and high adhesion strength of the formed scale. In recently published work in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces (available here), Prof. Ghasemi and his team report a new surface called magnetic slippery surface in two forms of Newtonian fluid (MAGSS) and gel structure (Gel-MAGSS). These surfaces provide a liquid−liquid interface to elevate the energy barrier for scale nucleation and minimize the adhesion strength of the formed scale on the surface. Performance of these new surfaces in both static and dynamic (under fluid flow) configurations is examined. These surfaces show superior antiscaling properties with an order of magnitude lower scale accretion compared to the solid surfaces and offer longevity and stability under high shear flow conditions. Prof. Ghasemi envisions that these surfaces open a new path to address the scale problem in the relevant technologies.

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