Passive smart self-repair in polymer matrix composite materials

Carolyn M. Dry, Nancy R Sottos

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


An investigation was made into the feasibility of developing a smart polymer matrix composite which has the ability to self-repair internal microcracks due to thermo-mechanical loading. The investigation focuses on the controlled cracking of hollow repair fibers dispersed in a composite and the subsequent timed release of chemicals which results in the sealing of matrix microcracks and the rebonding of damaged interfaces. In this preliminary work, the mechanisms of chemical release from a single repair fiber embedded in a polymer matrix were investigated using experimental analyses. It was found that controlled cracking of the repair fiber and subsequent release of the repair chemicals could be achieved by applying a polymer coating to the surface of the repair fibers. Release of chemicals into cracks was observed using optical microscopy and photoelasticity. Fiber pull-out and impact tests were performed to examine the ability to rebond fibers and fill cracks, respectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
PublisherPubl by Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)0819411493
StatePublished - 1993
EventSmart Structures and Materials 1993: Smart Materials - Albuquerque, NM, USA
Duration: Feb 1 1993Feb 4 1993


OtherSmart Structures and Materials 1993: Smart Materials
CityAlbuquerque, NM, USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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