Biofouling has been persisting as a worldwide problem due to the difficulties in finding efficient environment-friendly antifouling coatings for long-term applications. Developing novel coatings with desired antifouling properties has been one of the research goals for surface coating community. Recently hydrogel coating was proposed to serve as antifouling layer, for it offers the advantages of the ease of incorporating green biocides, and resisting attachment of microorganisms by its soft surface. Yet poor adhesion of the hydrogel on steel surfaces is a big concern. In this study, porous matrix aluminum coatings were fabricated by cored wire arc spray, and the sizes of the pores in the aluminum (Al) coatings were controlled by altering the size of the cored powder of sodium chloride. Silicone hydrogel was further deposited on the porous coating. The hydrogel penetrated into the open pores of the porous Al coatings, and the porous Al structure significantly enhanced the adhesion of the hydrogel. In addition, hydrogel coating exhibited very encouraging antifouling properties.

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