Mechanoresponsive Healing Polymers
materials and coatings
Mechanoresponsive Healing Polymers (LAR-TOPS-132)
Polymer strands utilizing mechanically responsive chemical groups to induce self-healing
NASA Langley Research Center is developing an innovative self-healing resin that automatically reacts to mechanical stimuli. Current structural materials are not self-healing, making it necessary to depend on complicated and potentially destructive repair methods and long down times. Unlike other proposed self-healing materials that use microencapsulated healing agents, this technology utilizes viscoelastic properties from inherent structure properties. The resulting technology is a self-healing material with rapid rates of healing and a wide range of use temperatures.
The method chemically introduces mechanically sensitive chemical groups into the structure of a resin. By introducing mechanoresponsive functional groups to a polymer, it is possible to induce self-healing through the transformation of such chemical groups to where mechanical properties of a structure are almost completely restored. The forces imparted by a damage event can therefore be used to enable healing or repair of the structure.
- Healing capability at elevated temperatures
- Fast healing rates (less than 100 microseconds)
- Healing without the need of foreign inserts or fillers (via structural chemistry)