Self Healing Smart Polymers: Insight and Applicability In Aerospace Industry

Foram Prajapati, Neil Chavan, Shrirang Chhatre


Smart polymers are polymers which have a unique potentiality to undergo change physically or chemically in response to external stimuli’s like temperature, pH, ionic concentration, light, magnetic fields, electrical fields, biological molecules and chemicals. The multi-responsive properties of smart polymer find applications in drug delivery, textiles, hydrogels, anticorrosive coatings, optical data storage, aerospace, military etc. Self-healing polymers, a type of smart polymers have an inherent ability to heal themselves like living tissues in body. This unique property leads to enhancement in its utility as composites, aerospace coatings, micro-encapsulations etc. Depending on the way of healing, self healing polymers are diversified in two categories namely intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic ones heal themselves while extrinsic ones demand use of external healing agents. The development of micro-cracks in any material leads to its failure in long term. The use of self healing polymer in composites plays a vital role as it helps in healing of micro-cracks thereby increasing the service life of the composite materials. The use of self healing polymers in composites gives them light weight, good process ability, chemical stability in any atmospheric conditions. The aim of this paper is to review the aspects of selfhealing technologies and future trends in aerospace applications.


Smart polymers; Self-healing Polymers (SHP’s); Polymer composites; Aerospace

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