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Functional self-healing materials

All the materials used in certain applications are going to be damaged by external (or internal) influences sooner or later. Such damage to the materials can lead to the failure of the component or of the entire device. Therefore, for instance, the service life of electricity storage or converters is limited.

In this context, functional self-healing materials represent a new field of research. FSHM can restore their original properties after damage. Originally, self-healing of polymeric materials focused on typical mechanical properties. Cracks in surfaces can heal, the breaking strength of materials can be (partially) restored. The fundamental principle of self-healing in polymeric materials is applied to functional materials at HIPOLE Jena. For instance, we are investigating self-healing in battery electrodes to restore conductivity after damage to the electrode. Comparable approaches could also be applied for solar cells.