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Global Self-healing market will reach $2.7 billion by 2020

Global Self-healing market will reach $2.7 billion by 2020

Global self-healing materials market is anticipated to grow over the forecast period on account of its increasing demand in construction, electronics and automobile industries. Self-healing materials are smart materials that have the ability to repair damages on their own caused due to their mechanical friction and with efflux of time. Post damage, the molecules of these materials re-adjust to replicate the original material. Initiation of cracks and other types of damages on the microscopic level change the electrical, thermal and acoustical properties of a material leading to its complete failure. Self-healing materials correct these damages with or without human intervention. Self-healing materials (reversible polymers, inorganic capsule and vascular systems, biomaterials, relevant shape memory materials and other self-healing coatings) will grow to around $2.7 billion by 2020.

Self-healing materials are categorized as biomaterials, reversible polymers, relevant shape memory materials, self-healing coatings, and inorganic capsule and vascular systems. These materials are widely used in products related to the electronic sector, construction works, and automotive industry, energy generation sector, healthcare, military and aerospace. Self-healing concretes are used for building & construction applications.


Self-healing materials minimize the maintenance cost required for repairing damages, which is expected to be a critical factor for market growth. Self-healing materials also extend the life span of the material as well as the base layer or product on which they are applied. Microencapsulated or Nano-encapsulated healing agents are present in capsulated self-healing materials, which are released upon rupture. Cracks get repaired within a sufficient time period consequently with the release of the healing agent. This healing cycle gets repeated whenever the cracks open again.

Key market players in the self-healing materials market include Alstom, Acciona, Apple, ATFI, Autonomic Materials, BASF, Avecom, Bayer, Critical Materials, CEINNMAT, Duco, Devan, Evonik, Encore, Flame Spray Technology, Fescon, Ford, GKN Aerospace, LG, General Motors, LG, Nissan, NEI, PPG, SLIPS technologies, Sensor Coatings Systems and Volkswagen. Acciona Infrastructures, a part of Healcon and Shine European projects, aims at developing concrete and road surfaces which will be capable of regenerating themselves.  Full-scale tests for these materials are anticipated to be initiated by end of 2016. These self healing materials are expected to reduce cost, pollution and noise associated with maintenance activities of roads and buildings. Acciona’s participation in the Shine and Healcon project focuses on the application of self-repairing materials to asphalt mixes used in roads and different types of concrete used for construction purposes. The Self Healing Innovative Elastomers (SHINE) project deals with developing plastic materials that can effectively heal themselves at ambient temperature. The research project has led to the creation of polyurethane in which reversible chemical bonds have been introduced. In addition to asphalt mixes, Acciona Infrastructures, is researching applications of self healing materials in sealing applications, dampers and anti-vibration systems used in vehicles, machinery, railroads, bridges and roads. Healcon aims at developing self-repairing types of concrete which can automatically heal fissures. The structures made from self-healing concrete will comprise of a self-repairing mechanism that will get activated as soon as micro-fissures will appear to avoid them turning into cracks.

Apple’s latest invention involves the use of self-healing and Teflon coatings in order to protect the backlight from getting scratched which produces unwanted artifacts on Mac and iDevice displays. ATFI’s Cerablak SHS is durable and has low-energy layers having an edge over other commercial organic coatings for use in high performance windshields and windscreens. Regular hydrophobic coatings rely on the functionality of a monolayer of organic material and environments where they are subject to damages caused by high temperatures and scraping. As a result, the functional groups that cause hydrophobicity in those materials get damaged permanently. Cerablak SHS has the characteristic to heal with time which results in a protective, regenerative and water-repelling effect. Its function to regenerate the low-energy surface after getting exposed to high temperatures and scraping results in only temporary degradation. The easy-to-clean and nonstick properties of Cerablak thus provide enhanced stability and protection when compared to other organic solutions.

Autonomic Materials (AMI) offers self-healing technologies that extend coating lifetimes, minimizing repair and upkeep. Their self-healing microcapsule systems are incorporated into coatings at the time of their manufacturing process. During usage when the surface of these coatings is subjected to damage, the microcapsules get activated releasing self-healing agents into the damaged area. When the healing agents get mixed, a polymerization reaction occurs which heals the damaged area.

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