Volume 11 (2016) Issue 2 Pages 264-271
Banana leaves are traditionally used to clean iron plates. This study evaluated the cleansing action of banana leaves by subjecting iron surfaces to a sliding regime on prepared leaves. Iron plates weighing 9, 16, and 23 N were soiled with polyethylene film at 135°C, 183°C, and 230°C. The surface morphology of banana leaves consisted of parallel ridges running along the leaf axis. Stomata and air pockets, the main biomimetic microstructures of banana leaves, were located between the spaces of the ridges. The cleansing action of the banana leaf surfaces (defined as dislodging of soil from the iron plate) was explained in terms of adhesive forces among the iron plate, polyethylene soil, and surface microstructure. The adhesion forces between the polyethylene soil and microstructures were the most significant. The operating forces were bio-adhesive in nature. The cleansing action increased as the loads and temperatures increased; the greatest cleansing action was obtained at 230°C (16 N). The morphological changes in the stomata and the air pockets during cleansing at different temperatures were tabulated.