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Matthias Mail

Scientific Research Focus

  • Structure-function relationship of biological surfaces

  • Biomimetic transfer of surface functionalities

  • Effect of structural modifications on the functionality of plant surfaces


Academic Education

  • 2003 - 2011

    Diploma in Physics, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany (Thesis: "Studies on the wetting of nano functionalized structural elements for building biomimetic air retaining surfaces")             

  • 2011 - 2014

    Stipendiary in the DFG Graduate Program “Bionik –  Interactions across Boundaries to the Environment” (DFG Graduiertenkolleg 1572)

  • since 2011

    PhD student at the Nees Institute for Biodiversity of Plants (Prof. Dr. W. Barthlott), University of Bonn


Professional Career


  • 2014 - 2015

    Scientific Assistant in the collaborative BMBF funded project “ARES – Air REtaining Surfaces” at the Nees Institute for Biodiversity of Plants, University of Bonn, Germany

  • since 2016

    Scientific Assistant at the Institute of Crop Science and Resource Conservation (INRES), Horticultural Science, University of Bonn, Germany


  • since 2016

    Team Leader “Functional aspects of plant surfaces" at the Institute of Crop Science and Resource Conservation (INRES), Horticultural Science, University of Bonn, Germany


Selected Publications

  1. Barthlott, W.; Mail, M.; Neinhuis, C. (2016). Superhydrophobic hierarchically structured surfaces in biology: evolution, structural principles and biomimetic applications. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal A, 374, 20160191. [DOI: 10.1098/rsta.2016.0191]

  2. Zeiger, C.; Rodrigues da Silva, I.C.; Mail, M.; Kavalenka, M.N.; Barthlott, W.; Hölscher, H. (2016). Microstructures of superhydrophobic plant leaves - inspiration for efficient oil spill cleanup materials. Bioinspiration & Biomimetics, 11, 056003. [DOI: 10.1088/1748-3190/11/5/056003]

  3. Röhrig, M.; Mail, M.; Schneider, M.; Louvin, H.; Hopf, A.; Schimmel, T.; Worgull, M.; Hölscher, H. (2014). Biomimetic Nanofur: Nanofur for Biomimetic Applications. Adv. Mater. Interfaces, 1(4), 1300083. [DOI: 10.1002/admi.201470022]

  4. Mail, M.; Böhnlein, B.; Mayser, M.; Barthlott, W. (2015). Bionische Reibungsreduktion: Eine Lufthülle hilft Schiffen Treibstoff zu sparen. In: Kesel, A. B., Zehren, D. (Eds.): Bionik: Patente aus der Natur – 7. Bremer Bionik-Kongress, Bremen; ISBN 978-3-00-048202-1, pp. 126–134.

  5. Mail, M.; Mayser, M.; Böhnlein, B.; Barthlott, W. (2015). Air retaining surfaces: Backswimmers and floating ferns inspire ships to save fuel. Proceedings of the 38rd Annual Meeting of The Adhesion Society, Inc., 20. – 25. February 2015, Savannah, GA, USA.

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