German engineers have developed a self-healing plastic

Researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and Evonik Industries have developed a new polymer mesh, which can quickly and repeatedly recover its structure at relatively low temperatures after injury.

The new material originated by the reaction of chemical cross linking which provides good short-term healing properties of the material under low heat. The scratches on the car or cracks in the polymer can be eliminated with material that restores its original molecular structure after the damage. After four years of research, the team introduced a versatile renewable material. At temperatures from 50 ° C to 120 ° C, the polymer has excellent properties within a few minutes. The advantage is that the self-repair mechanism can be initiated at any time using heat or light or by adding chemicals. "Our method does not require a catalyst or additive," says Professor burner-Kowalik, one of the developers of the method.

Useful properties can be applied for a wide variety of known polymers. In addition to the self-healing material has a property such as fluidity at higher temperatures, allowing you to shape it. Potential area of application is in the manufacture of reinforced plastics components for the automotive and aviation industries.



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