Unidirectional liquid transport without any need of external energy has drawn worldwide attention for its potential applications in various fields such as microfluidics, biomedicine and mechanical engineering. In nature, numerous creatures have evolved such extraordinary unidirectional liquid transport ability, such as spider silk, Sarracenia’s trichomes, and Nepenthes alata’s peristome, etc. This review summarizes the current progresses of natural unidirectional liquid transport on 1-Dimensional (1D) linear structure and 2-Dimensional (2D) surface structure. The driving force of unidirectional liquid transport which is determined by unique structure exist distinct differences in physics. The fundamental understanding of 1D and 2D unidirectional liquid transport especially about hierarchical structural characteristics and their transport mechanism were concentrated, and various bioinspired fabrication methods are also introduced. The applications of bioinspired directional liquid transport are demonstrated especially in fields of microfluidics, biomedical devices and anti-icing surfaces. With newly developed smart materials, various liquid transport regulation strategies are also summarized for the control of transport speed, direction guiding, etc. Finally, we provide new insights and future perspectives of the directional transport materials.
This work is carried out by Liwen Zhang, Guang Liu, Huawei Chen, Xiaolin Liu, Tong Ran, Yi Zhang, Yang Gan & Deyuan Zhang
1. School of Mechanical Engineering and Automation, Beihang University, Beijing, 100191, China;
2. Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Biomedical Engineering, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China
and published on JBE Volume 18, Issue 1, February 2021, Pages 1-29. https://doi.org/10.1007/s42235-021-0009-z