The feathers of doves and other birds shed water due to nanoscale grooves on their surfaces.

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"According to Prof. Edward Bormashenko from the Department of Physics at the Ariel University Center of Samaria, the surface of a dove's wing - and that of most birds - is the perfect raincoat, keeping water and dirt from sticking to their bodies. Bormashenko's current research into non-stick materials is based on this understanding, and could lead to self-cleaning textiles, and have important implications in the shipping, recreational sports and building industries. Applying techniques from the fields of physics and nanotechnology, Bormashenko has succeeded in duplicating the material found on bird's wings. He calls it a superhydrophobic polymer. 'It's all because of the 'roughness' on the feathers of the bird,' Bormashenko tells ISRAEL21c, explaining that the surface of a bird's feathers are covered in miniscule nano-sized grooves, 100 nm to 10 microns in width. The unique grooves (at angles of 180 degrees), trap a blanket of air around the feather, and prevent liquids from attaching to the wing surface." (Kloosterman 2008)

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Waterproof dove provides inspiration for new stick-free polymer

Journal article
A reliable method of manufacturing metallic hierarchical superhydrophobic surfacesAppl. Phys. Lett.June 3, 2009
Roman Pogreb, Gene Whyman, Reuven Barayev, Edward Bormashenko, Doron Aurbach

Journal article
Superhydrophobic Metallic Surfaces And Their Wetting PropertiesSuperhydrophobic SurfacesNovember 29, 2010
E. Bormashenko, D. Aurbach, B. Sorokov, T. Stein, S. Sutovsky, Y. Bormashenko, Y. Danoch, Y. Shoham, R. Pogreb, G. Whyman

Journal article
Wetting Properties of the Multiscaled Nanostructured Polymer and Metallic Superhydrophobic SurfacesLangmuirOctober 24, 2006
Edward Bormashenko, Tamir Stein, Gene Whyman, Yelena Bormashenko, Roman Pogreb

Journal article
Why do pigeon feathers repel water? Hydrophobicity of pennae, Cassie–Baxter wetting hypothesis and Cassie–Wenzel capillarity-induced wetting transitionJournal of Colloid and Interface ScienceFebruary 26, 2007
Edward Bormashenko, Yelena Bormashenko, Tamir Stein, Gene Whyman, Ester Bormashenko

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