Facile and large-scale fabrication of a cactus-inspired continuous fog collector
Although clean drinking water is a basic human need, freshwater scarcity has been identified as a major global problem of the 21st century. Nature has long served as a source of inspiration for human beings to develop new technology. The cactus in the desert possesses a multifunctional integrated fog collection system originating from the cooperation of a Laplace pressure gradient and the wettability difference. In this contribution, inspired by the cactus, an artificial fog collector on a large scale is first fabricated through integrating cactus spine-like hydrophobic conical micro-tip arrays with the hydrophilic cotton matrix. The novel cactus-inspired fog collector can spontaneously and continuously collect, transport, and preserve fog water, demonstrating high fog collection efficiency and promising applications in the regions with drinking water scarcity. Furthermore, the present approach is simple, time-saving and cost-effective, which provides a potential device and new idea to solve the global water crisis.