Development of Innovative Engineering Surfaces for Water Harvesting 


Dr. Chun-Wei Yao, Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering


This project studied the physics that govern water harvesting on engineering surfaces. Specifically, we investigated how nano/micro engineering surfaces affect condensing and collecting water. Innovative engineering surfaces were fabricated for water harvesting.


Recently, newly surface treatments and processes techniques at micro/nano-scale level have opened a new age in the development of new engineering surfaces for water condensation and water harvesting. However, the water harvesting performance using these surfaces has not significantly improved, because of the use of materials with low thermal conductivity and poor liquid shedding ability. Therefore, there is a need to design, fabricate, and test engineering surfaces capable of enhancing water shedding ability and maintaining adequate wettability, while improving water harvesting performance.  In this project, superhydrophobic surfaces for water condensation were fabricated and characterized. Results showed that the surfaces enhanced water shedding ability. These findings can be used to design an evaporation–condensation desalination system.


This project was funded by Center for Advances in Water and Air Quality, Lamar University.


  • W. Yao, C.L. Lai, J. Alvarado, J. Zhou, K. Aung, J. Mejiad, “Experimental Study on Effect of Surface Vibration on Micro Textured Surfaces with Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Materials” Applied surface science (under review).