De-icing planes with the “lotus effect”

In winter, planes have to be deiced before take-off. Indeed, water droplets stick to aluminum surfaces and form icy particles. Researchers – among them Material Scientist Elmar Bonaccurso of Airbus Central R&T – are looking into how this can be prevented and seek environmentally friendly alternatives to chemical or heat deicing. One of the solutions is to make aluminum water-repellent and therefore icephobic with new superhydrophobic coatings. One of these experimental coatings is inspired by a natural phenomenon known as the “lotus effect” where water drops just roll off the surface of the leaves.

To watch the video, please go to the Euronews website.