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Adhesion performance of polymer nanofibres under shear loading
Geckos have extraordinary wall-climbing ability because of the millions of hairs with micro/nano fibrillar structures on their feet. Mimicking gecko's feet is of scientific and engineering importance for development of physical adhesion materials and devices. The design of gecko-inspired physical adhesives seems to be geometry dominated. In this study, Finite Element Method (FEM) has been used to analyse the vertical peel-off force of polyporpylene (PP) nanofibres having different fibre dimensions, inclining angels and contact areas on a flat glass substrate. It has been found that the main parameters affecting the frictional adhesion are fibre diameter and fibre aspect ratio, the inclining angle between the fibre and the substrate surface, and the intimate contact areas. Our analysis has shown that PP nanofibres with a diameter of less than 200nm can generate less peel-off force than fibres of larger diameters, indicating more stable adhesion with the glass substrate for thinner fibres. A bent fibre with more intimate contact area can bear more shear force than a straight fibre with less contact area. Also, under the same shear loading, fibres with an inclining angle of less than 30° provide a low peel off force.