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Polymer science, Civil engineering, Transport engineering, Materials engineering
Featured Application: This self-healing technology for asphalt pavements has the potential to greatly disrupt asphalt production methods (which have been stable over the past 100 years).This paper presents a development process of ‘calcium-alginate microcapsules encapsulating an asphalt bitumen rejuvenator’. The encapsulated rejuvenator is released when required (on demand) which rejuvenates the aged binder. Once crack is initiated and starts propagating it encounters a microcapsule, energy at tip of the crack opens the microcapsule, releasing the rejuvenator (healing agent). The rejuvenator will infuse into the aged binder soften it, allowing to flow, two broken edges to get into a contact and seal the crack, i.e., repair the damage. This self-healing system has the potential to double the life span of roads, greatly improving road performance while reducing costs. By advancing self-healing technology and applying it to the road industry, the self-healing technology presents an opportunity to revolutionise road design and costs, both financial and environmental, associated with the road construction and maintenance processes.
Xu, S. et al. (2019) Optimization of the Calcium Alginate Capsules for Self-Healing Asphalt, Appl. Sci.2019, 9, 468; doi:10.3390/app9030468