"In the presence of ordinary sunlight ... the bridges reform..."
How long before the word "reform" is replaced by "replicate"...?
Self-repairing plastic that can heal cuts and scratches on its own surface has been presented at a meeting of the American Chemistry Society. Inspired by human skin, the new material could make for self-healing cars and smartphones, that change colour when damaged and can close over "wounds" of its own accord. Professor Marek …
How long before the word "reform" is replaced by "replicate"...?
Has already been used on cars, plasticising it was just the next step, but not that revolutionary.
Do the same thing!
"The ACS suggest it could have a use in battlefield weapons systems"
Oh hurrah , finally battlefield weapons systems is getting some R&D , a much maligned field in which there have been no advances for decades.
At last someone has had the sense to have a think about how we van all kill each other more effectively
the fact that the research was in part paid for by the department of d̶e̶f̶e̶n̶s̶e War, then I think to continue getting money from them they would have to say it could have a use in battlefield weapons systems...
But think for a minute....
Battlefields are all about blowing stuff up and destroying stuff, the plastic is about fixing stuff. Other military hardware, they would have to leave out in the sun for it to be fixed. I am not sure how quick it fixes itself, but I bet a £ to a penny that its not ever going to be quick enough for battlefield use. They are not going to discard something in the arena that will fix itself for the enemy to come along and pick up.
best use for the battlefield will be to let a soldier know something was damaged and not safe to use....
the best use I can think of is for the external shell of aeroplanes....
"I bet a £ to a penny that its not ever going to be quick enough for battlefield use. They are not going to discard something in the arena that will fix itself for the enemy to come along and pick up."
OTOH, not everything gets abandoned on the battlefield; some equipment DOES get taken back to a repair depot. I suspect that in the future the equation will be roughly the same as it is now "How expensive/critical/replaceable/repairable is this unit? Is it too damaged to be worthwhile sending back? If some parts are self-repairing, that could change the equation.
You could scratch a picture onto a sheet of this that you could not properly observe as it would start to 'heal' as soon as you had enough light to see it by.
Does this mean I'll never have a hole in another pair of socks? (apart from the one I put my foot through wise-ass)
you wear plastic socks? it is for incontinence or just a fetish thing?
Nylon ... Rayon .. Polyester are the most common ones
Most socks, with the exception of 100% cotton ones, do contain a fair amount of Polyester: http://bit.ly/HcLTQu.
"fixing simple things like scratched car fenders and in assessing damage in internal parts of anything from computers to aircraft."
... or killer mechanical robo-juggernaughts.
As the title says the first read of your post, robo-juggernaughts appeared in my head as robo-jugs, of course I then started thinking about self healing boobs, what then happened was a concerted effort on my part to stop that line of thinking and get back to work.
This highlights the issue of not drinking my morning quota of coffee before embarking on a reading spree through El Reg.
That is the PIP implants problem resolved. You're a genius
*Patiently waiting for my Patent Application form to arrive* ;-)
Could do with this for my glasses.. always getting scratched.
..as the scratches would turn red during the 'repair' time, rendering them vaguely useless
If i scratched my glasses I'd be seeing red for a while anyway.
But you don't have to use the colour change in the lens.
Qucik rub with a Brillo pad, and bingo! Rose tinted spectacles.
With previous reports of this kind of thing I'd always wondered how the initial shape was "specified". i.e. you might have areas of stress or shapes with sharp edges and corners and you don't want them to "heal" back to something flat or round. I have visions that over time anything made from this stuff starts looking a bit, well, blobby... (but then I'm not a chemist)
Judging by the scale on the photos in the article, we're talking about "hairline" cracks of under 0.1mm. Could be much less.
On the other hand, maybe the parts can be pushed back together so they "grow" into an invisible joint?
That is so cool.
That was exactly my thought when i read this article....I wish there was a time lapse or something so we could see it in action though.
shame this wasn't around when CDs and DVDs were all the rage
still doesn't do anything for the fol flaking off the back of a disc
yea its all great until your car gets a tumor
Self repairing Bulgarian airbags?
No doubt with the custom ROM fitted?
(apologies to XKCD)
A polymer coating that turns red with damage and self heals, and it just happens to be flesh coloured, this is clearly first gen terminator skin.
I thought the T-600s had rubber skin, not plastic.
the best application is in condoms?
would you really want to leave a condom in the sun for a while then reuse it?
Only if the sun shines out of ....
I'll get my coat.
A fantastic plastic that will never biodegrade. Enough of this stuff in the swirling Great Pacific Garbage Patch and it will probably come sentinent...
If Reggie Perrin's boss was head guy at Apple he would say "I didn't get where I am today by making stuff like this"
Imagine if the component parts of Airfix kits just merged with each other when held together? No more tricky gluing! No more spotty youths sniffing plastic cement.
of completely unrepairable plastic of late.
What happens if I leave my self healing plastic phone on top of my self healing plastic counter top in bright sunshine?
The last thing I want is my self healing plastic items healing to each other.
... but where is Imipolex after all these years since Gravity's Rainbow?
Possible answer: already invented, now highly Classified?
You can buy self-healing cutting boards in most art and carft shops. They are so clever.
true, but they do start to get a bit knackered after a while. I've gone through (not quite literally) a few. Probably shouldn't have been using a stanley knife though ...
Welcome our self healing plastic overlords.
No more caps or bridges. Just that red-tinted brilliantly white smile.
Do I really need the plastic item to have red streaks to say ooh look at me I'm scratched to buggery, but don't worry in a few days I'll look normal again! How about just getting scratched and repairing itself quietly? Do we need the song and dance of mimicking nature by turning red???