Skin: a last resort. Even with a blister, the skin on the toe is almost completely normal, thanks to a few days of rest and adjustment (automatic). Wouldn’t it be amazing if things could also do that? The basic concept of “self healing materials”, which we will describe as artificial things that automatically repair without the obvious detection of a problem or human intervention.
1. Embedded healing agents: The best-known medical devices have built-in micro capsules (small embedded packets) filled with glue-like chemicals that can repair damage. When the device cracks inside, the capsules open, the repair “licks”, and the seal breaks. It works in the same way as a type of glue called epoxy, which is supplied in the form of two liquid polymers in different containers (usually two injections). When you mix the liquid together, a chemical reaction and strong adhesion (co-polymer) occurs.
The main drawback of encapsulation is that the capsules should be very small or weakened; the size of the cracks they can fill. Another problem is that capsules can only heal damage once: if the equipment fails and it cannot survive twice.
2. Micro-vascular materials: Our body has an amazingly large vascular system that carries blood and oxygen for energy and repair. In the event of a disaster, our blood system simply pumps extra supplies into areas where they are needed, but only when they are needed.
When failure occurs, pressure is released on the other side of the tube causing the healing agent to insert where needed.
3. Shape-memory materials: You usually need to heat it up to get it back to its original, selected state.
Memory repair materials therefore require a certain type of heat transfer method in the area where the damage occurred.
What can be the future?
It is not hard to imagine all kinds of living things, from bridges and structures to repairing cracks into cars.One day, we can have parts of the human body that can sustain themselves and their natural similarities.