Self Healing Concrete

Self Healing Materials is a new research area that gets a lot of attention in recent years. Self Healing Concrete is a term that is used for cement-based materials that repair themselves after the material or structure gets damaged due to some sort of deterioration mechanism.

In this blog we will update you on the progress of the Self Healing Concrete projects running in the section Materials & Environment and the Microlab of the faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences of Delft University.

This blog contains a description of the running projects that are financed by AgentschapNL, DCMat, STW and industrial partners. Also a page "Literature & Videos" is included where a lot of publications can be found.

Fibre CC

Erik Schlangen
Jung Kim


In this project self healing of ECC is promoted by the use of Super Absorbent Polymers(SAP) in the mix. The SAP’s are filled with water during the mixing process and form in such a way water pockets in the concrete that can be used for hydration of the cement and thus self healing in a later stage. SAP’s are known as additive to mitigate autogenous shrinkage in concrete. The self healing capacity of the SHCC is already improved by adding these SAP’s in specimens that are cracked and subsequently stored in water. However these SAP’s can also work for specimens stored in air. The waterpockets are emptied during or shortly after the first hydration. When the material cracks at a later stage no water is left anymore. After some rain on the structure the SAP’s located in the cracked zone are again filled and then slowly release the water for stimulating the self healing mechanism. But in general, the concrete structure  are  exposed to  more than two load repetitons. Work is in progress to investigate self healing capacity under flexural cyclic load.