Self-Healing Polymer Works Without Catalyst
For the first time, a self-healing polymer has been demonstrated that does not require an additional catalyst to start the process.
(Self-healing polymer requires no catalyst)
A cylindrical sample of a polymer (a) was cut in half (b and c)
and the two halves were then allowed to stand for 2 hours by
simple contact (d). After that time, the material could be manually
stretched without rupture (e and f).
(credit: Royal Society of Chemistry)
Self-healing polymers have been able to mend themselves by reforming broken cross-linking bonds, but that requires an external catalyst (trigger) to promote bond repair, such as heat, light, or specific environmental conditions, such as pH.
Ibon Odriozola at the CIDETEC Centre for Electrochemical Technologies in Spain used a poly(urea–urethane) elastomeric network, which completely mended itself after being cut in two by a razor blade. It is the metathesis reaction of aromatic disulphided (which naturally exchange at room temperature) that causes regeneration.
The blogosphere is awash with attention-grabbing headlines regarding "Terminator" polymers, referring to the self-healing characteristics of the T-1000 robot from Terminator 2.
However, real sf fans know that the self-healing material idea is much older. For example, you might be familiar with the self-healing houses from brilliant writer JG Ballard's 1962 story The Thousand Dreams of Stellavista.
Even better, consider the self-healing plastic from Golden Age great Raymond Z. Gallun's 1951 short story Asteroid of Fear, which was perfect for asteroid greenhouses:
But the wide roof was all the way up, now—intact. It made a great, squarish bubble, the skin of which [a 'transparent, wire-strengthened plastic '] was specially treated to stop the hard and dangerous part of the ultra-violet rays of the sun, and also the lethal portion of the cosmic rays. It even had an inter-skin layer of gum that could seal the punctures that grain-of-sand-sized meteors might make.
Via Kurzweil AI; special thanks to Pete for contributing the tip on this story.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/16/2013)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
LiquiGlide Will Be Everywhere
'They poured the remnants of eggs out of their frictionless cups...'- Larry Niven, 1973.
Synthetic 'Squid Skin' For Camouflage On The Way
'The small, chameleon-clad figures continued to advance.'- Gordon R. Dickson, 1960.
Shape-Shifting Carbon Fiber
'Its lines wavered, flowed, and then painfully reformed.'- Philip K. Dick, 1957.
'Diamond Nanothreads' Now, Someday Space Elevators?
'It is a continuous pseudo-one dimensional diamond crystal'- Arthur C. Clarke, 1978.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Zap Space Debris With Telescope Laser On ISS
'... their lasers vaporized the smaller satellites...'
Moran Cerf, When Will We Get Neuro Tech For Ourselves?
If brainwave-sensing consumer products tickle your fancy...
Velkess Energy Storage System (It's A Flexible Flywheel!)
'The kinetic man unjacked Lalji’s kink-springs from the winding treadmills...'
Performance Enhancing Drugs - In Gaming?
'A faint smell of rachag stimulant wafted down the table.'
Automated Treadmill Adjusts To Your Pace
'The auto-treadmill's bumps and gullies matched...'
Mr. Anderton, Beware This Long-Range Iris Scanner
Try keeping your eyes shut, Mr. Anderton.
Mini Statues Of You From 3D Images
'...A three-dimensional simulacrum of himself six inches high took form.'
'Forever' Camera Powered By Its Own Images
'What I have in this camera is not a record of what you did just now but what will go on here in the next half hour...'
Robot Chef Makes Thousands Of Dinners
'I got one of those new electronic cameras... and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second.'
Revault Wearable Private Cloud Is Too Vaporous
'A man or woman could carry AIs or complete planetary dataspheres...'
Spacex Sticks Landing! But Neglects Lateral Forces
Lumo Projector Turns Kids Rooms Into Bradbury's Veldt
'The walls began to purr and recede... and presently an African veldt appeared...'
Ground Control Space Beer
Ninkasi Brewing Co. has its own space program.
Google Wants To Give Orders To Robot Armies
Or maybe they aren't bent on world domination.
Gestures Control Spider Robot Army
'What do you think - four spiders, one per floor?'
Hologram Protest World's First
'Their bodies were in their dwelling cells, but their telucid images filled the hall.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories