Authors: German V. Kolmakov, Ravindra Revanur, Ravisubhash Tangirala, Todd Emrick, Thomas P. Russell, Alfred J. Crosby, Anna C. Balazs
Title: Using Nanoparticle-Filled Microcapsules for Site-Specific Healing of Damaged Substrates: Creating a “Repair-and-Go” System
Summary: Using a hybrid computational approach, we simulate the behavior of nanoparticle-filled microcapsules that are propelled by an imposed shear to move over a substrate, which encompasses a microscopic crack. When the microcapsules become localized in the crack, the nanoparticles can penetrate the capsule’s shell to bind to and fill the damaged region. Initially focusing on a simple shear flow, we isolate conditions where the microcapsules become arrested in the cracks and those where the capsules enter the cracks for a finite time but are driven to leave this region by the imposed flow. We also characterize the particle deposition process for these two scenarios, showing that the deposition is greater for the arrested capsules. We then determine the effect of utilizing a pulsatile shear flow and show that this flow field can lead to an effective “repair-and-go” system where the microcarriers not only deliver a high volume fraction of particles into the crack but also leave the fissure and, thus, can potentially repair additional damage within the system.
Source: ACS Nano, 2010, 4 (2), pp 1115–1123.