Self healing materials – Pioneering research in the Netherlands

This week, a new book on self healing materials was published. On 27 October 2015, during the IOP symposium ‘Self healing materials – prepare for landing’ in Utrecht, the Netherlands, the book ‘Self healing materials – Pioneering research in the Netherlands’ saw the light.

The editors of the book – Sybrand van der Zwaag and Eddy Brinkman – presented the first copy of the book to Amandus Lundqvist of the top sector High Tech Systems & Materials. All present at this symposium – mainly project leaders and researchers at universities and in industry – could take a copy of the book with them.

Self healing materials - Pioneering research in the NetherlandsIn the book ‘Self healing materials – Pioneering research in the Netherlands’, about one decade of Dutch research on self healing materials is compiled into 300 pages. Sybrand and Eddy edited the book in the first half of 2015, but the real heroes are of course the project leaders (together with their coworkers) who wrote the 30 chapters.

In 2006 the Dutch government funded an 8 year and 20 million euro research program on Self Healing Materials. The research was not to be restricted to one material class or one particular healing approach. It was to explore all opportunities to create self healing behavior in engineering and functional materials, and to bring the new materials to a level where they could be tested in real life applications. At its launch, the innovative research program (IOP) was the very first integrated multi-material approach to this field in the world. The research was to be conducted at Dutch universities working in collaboration with industry. With the IOP Self Healing Materials program coming to an end, this book presents the highlights of the pioneering research in the field of self healing materials in the Netherlands.

Given the diversity of topics addressed, the book will be of value to all materials scientists working in the field of materials and materials by design in particular, as well as industrial engineers and developers with an interest in increasing the reliability and reducing the maintenance of their products. The book will also be an inspiration to students and show them how an unspecified concept of self healing can be translated to new materials with exceptional behaviour.

The book contains nine chapters on self healing in polymers & composites. The research described ranges from mechanochemistry at the level of individual molecular chains via mesoscopic research linking polymer composition to self healing behaviour to research on the micro- and macroscopic level addressing new approaches to self healing fibre reinforced composites.

Five chapters are devoted to self healing in metals & ceramics. The research described deals with room temperature healing in aluminium alloys and high temperature healing in creep steels, MAX phase metallo-ceramics and ceramics for tribological applications.

The seven chapters on self healing civil engineering materials address crack closure in concrete and asphalt. The various new routes developed make use of physics, chemistry or even bacteria. Some of the products developed even made it to the market and are being tested under real life conditions.

Coatings form a special domain in the field of self healing materials. Four chapters are devoted to organic coatings and address issues like restoration of surface smoothness, corrosion protection and surface friction coefficient. Two chapters describe experimental and computational research on thermal barrier coatings for high temperature applications.

The book ends with three chapters devoted to self healing in functional materials and deal with healing in non-structural devices such as thermal interfaces in high power microelectronic devices, light emitting layers in OLEDs as well as catalysts in fuel cells membranes.

The book will be a source of inspiration and reference for anyone with an interest in self healing materials for many years to come.

Sybrand van der Zwaag & Eddy Brinkman (editors), ‘Self healing materials – Pioneering research in the Netherlands’, ISBN 978-1-61499-513-5, IOS Press, the Netherlands (2015) 308 pages

The book is published by IOS Press in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.