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Study of quantification methods in self-healing ceramics, polymers and concrete: A route towards standardization

: Lucas, Sandra S.; Tapavicza, Max von; Schmidt, Annette M.; Bertling, Jürgen; Nellesen, Anke


Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures 27 (2016), No.19, pp.2577-2598
ISSN: 1045-389X
ISSN: 1530-8138
Journal Article
Fraunhofer UMSICHT Oberhausen ()
ceramics; concrete; stimuli-sensitiv polymers; self-healing

During the past decades, research in self-healing materials has focused on the improvement in the mechanical properties, making stronger materials, able to bear increasing solicitations. This strategy proved to be costly and in some cases inefficient, since materials continue to fail, and maintenance costs remained high. Instead of preparing stronger materials, it is more efficient to prepare them to heal themselves, reducing repairing costs and prolonging their lifetime. Several different self-healing strategies, applied to different material classes, have been comprehensively studied. When new materials are subject of research, the attention is directed into the formulations, product processing and scale-up possibilities. Efforts to measure self-healing properties have been conducted considering the specific characteristics of each material class. The development of comprehensive service conditions allowing a unified discussion across different materials classes and the standardization of the underlying quantification methods has not been a priority so far. Until recently, the quantification of self-healing ability or efficiency was focused mostly on the macroscale evaluation, while micro and nanoscale events, responsible for the first stage in material failure, received minor attention. This work reviews the main evaluation methods developed to assess self-healing and intends to establish a route for fundamental understanding of the healing phenomena.