Self-healing kinetics and the stereoisomers of dicyclopentadiene.

Research paper by Timothy C TC Mauldin, Joseph D JD Rule, Nancy R NR Sottos, Scott R SR White, Jeffrey S JS Moore

Indexed on: 26 Jan '07Published on: 26 Jan '07Published in: Journal of the Royal Society, Interface / the Royal Society


While original epoxy resin-based self-healing systems used the commercially available endo-isomer of dicyclopentadiene (DCPD), the exo-stereoisomer is known to have much faster olefin metathesis reaction rates with first-generation Grubbs' catalyst. Here, we measure the energy to failure of healed specimens as a function of healing time and compare the kinetics of damage repair for endo- and exo-DCPD, and mixtures of the two isomers. Using catalyst loading levels previously reported to be effective for endo-DCPD, exo-DCPD was found to heal approximately 20 times faster than the endo-isomer, but with a lower healing efficiency. The fracture toughness of the repaired specimens decreased when the exo content of the blends was greater than 40% and, for the pure exo-DCPD, when the catalyst loadings were below 1%. Possible causes of the reduced healing efficiencies of the exo-DCPD healing agent are discussed.