The effect of the backing layer thickness on adhesion was investigated for single-level elastomer fibrillar adhesives. Polyurethane microfiber arrays with spatulated tips on a 160 μm thick backing layer show nine times greater adhesion strength (around 22 N cm2) than those with a 1120 μm thick backing. A theoretical model is proposed to explain this difference in which very thin backing layers promote equal load sharing, maximizing adhesion, while very thick backings can lead to reduced adhesion due to edge stress concentration. Therefore, backing layer thickness should be considered as a significant parameter for design of high performance fibrillar adhesives.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)