Stimuli triggered deployment of bio-inspired self-healing functionality

Richard Trask*, Ian Bond, Chris Norris

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

1 Citation (Scopus)


The concept of self-healing materials has gained widespread acceptance in the research community. Over recent years a diverse array of bio-inspired self-healing concepts, from solid-state diffusion to liquid-phase healing in a broad range of engineering materials, embracing ceramics, polymers and fibre reinforced polymer composite materials have been proposed in the open literature. In this research study the liquid-phase healing of operational damage, namely impact damage, is being addressed. The challenge of self-healing advanced fibre reinforced polymer composites is ensuring healing success without degrading the host composite's performance, a problem not encountered in the self-healing of generic polymeric systems. In the genre of self-healing fibre reinforced composite materials, autonomous healing has been undertaken by a healing medium already located within the damage zone and released through the damage site either passively or actively through human invention. This approach requires the 'engineering' control of the storage medium's toughness for release and the development of bespoke resin chemistries to be compatible with the manufacturing route, to remain active whilst latent and then to recover full mechanical performance once a damage event occurs. This study has generated a proof of concept whereby the healing medium is only deployed to the damage site once a sensor has been triggered. In essence this study aims to develop stimuli triggered deployment of a healing medium held remotely in a storage reservoir to repair impact damage to a composite material. The principle of the concept is revolves around the ability of a reservoir to deliver a healing medium to a damage site via a network of vessels contained in the centerline of the composite laminate. A Labview controlled peristaltic pressure rig containing the reservoirs for the resin and hardener, their independent pumps, pressure gauges, control switches and indicators was developed. Through the application of an impact event successfully deliver and subsequent healing of the damage event was achieved showing the potential of this concept for minimising parasitic mass and maximising healing potential in fibre reinforced composite materials.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationASME 2011 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems, SMASIS 2011
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2011
EventASME 2011 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems, SMASIS 2011 - Scottsdale, AZ, United Kingdom
Duration: 18 Sept 201121 Sept 2011


ConferenceASME 2011 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems, SMASIS 2011
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
CityScottsdale, AZ


Dive into the research topics of 'Stimuli triggered deployment of bio-inspired self-healing functionality'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this