Smart surfaces by initiated chemical vapor deposition
- Author: Anna Maria Coclite 1, 2
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- Source: Surface Innovations, Volume 1, Issue 1, January 2013 pages 6 –14
The ability to modify the surface of materials with functional and responsive coatings is a powerful tool for the fabrication of smart devices for biotechnology, microfluidics, membrane technology, sensors and drug delivery systems. A recently developed method for the deposition of polymeric thin films, called initiated chemical vapor deposition (iCVD) is reviewed here. The authors will describe the high versatility of iCVD in driving application-specific properties into the material, creating a platform for the implementation of polymeric coatings into device fabrication. The significant impact of this polymerization technique lies in the possibility of obtaining polymers with chemical structure similar to the one of the polymers synthesized by conventional techniques with the advantages of a solvent-free deposition, which is totally substrate independent. Deposition has been demonstrated on paper, metal, plastics, porous substrates and very recently liquids. Tuning the process parameters allows to obtain controlled and uniform thickness over 3D substrates. Future outlook and iCVD scale-up approaches are also discussed.