Sustainable, Self-Healing Coatings (2013-065)

Market Overview:

This self-healing polymer coating inhibits corrosion of metal iron substrates while extending the life of coated materials. Self-healing materials are an emerging and promising market, expected to reach a market value of $2.7 billion by 2020. The concept of self-healing materials is to enable materials to repair damage with minimum intervention. Current approaches to achieving self-healing materials are based on encapsulating self-healing agents, which is an expensive and oftentimes impractical endeavor. Clemson University researchers have developed a self-healable polymeric coating that is achieved via crosslinking sugar moieties capable of self-repair and incorporating in polyurethanes. Further, the corrosion inhibition is achieved by crosslinking materials that inhibit the formation of iron containing oxides. By using this newly developed protective coating, the life of equipment or products can be significantly extended and their environmental footprint reduced.


Application                                          Stage of Development

Sustainable coatings                             Preliminary Prototype



• Extends life of coated materials, reducing environmental footprint

• Enables self-healing and corrosion inhibition, fulfilling attributes existing materials lack

• Allows for simple, scalable manufacturing process, minimizing costs compared to previous

  self-healing approaches


Technical Summary

Clemson researchers have developed self-healable polyurethane polymeric coatings and simultaneous corrosion inhibition when applied to metal iron substrates. Self-healing is achieved via crosslinking of chitosan with polyurethane forming components. Corrosion inhibition is achieved by crosslinking of dopamine with polyurethane as terminating chain and segments that inhibits formation of Fe+3 containing oxides. By incorporating sugar moieties into polyurethanes, these materials are able to react with atmospheric CO2 in the presence of H2O, thus reforming covalent linkages capable of bridging cleaved network segments. Mechanical properties are recovered during self-repair process. These materials resemble behavior of plants during photosynthesis, but unlike plants, they don’t require photo-initiated reactions.

View printable PDF version of this technology



Inventors:                      Marek W. Urban, Ying Yang

Patent Type:                  Utility

Serial Number:             15/037,214

CURF Ref No:              2013-065

Patent Information:
Advanced Materials
For Information, Contact:
Chase Kasper
Business Development
Clemson University Research Foundation
Marek Urban
Ying Yang
Sustainable Construction
© 2023. All Rights Reserved. Powered by Inteum