The effect of surface textures on the friction of Poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) elastomer was investigated at both macro and micro scales using a nanoindenter. Friction tests were conducted by means of a stainless-steel bearing ball with a diameter of 1.6mm (macro scale tests) and a Rockwell diamond tip with a radius of curvature of 25 μm (micro scale tests), under normal loads of 5, 10, and 25 mN and with a sliding speed of 1 μm/sec. The coefficient of friction (COF) obtained using the textured surface is found to be much lower than that using the flat surface of the same material, and it was reduced by about 59% in the macro scale tests and 38% in the micro scale tests. COFs in different sliding directions on the groove-textured surfaces were compared, and the friction behaviors were analyzed. It is also found that surface texture (roughness) can tune surface wettability from medium hydrophobic to superhydrophobic. The experimental results (contact angles) were compared with theoretical predictions, and possible explanations were given.

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