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An Overview of Bioinspired and Biomimetic Self-Repairing Materials

by Olga Speck 1,2,* and Thomas Speck 1,2
Plant Biomechanics Group and Botanic Garden, University of Freiburg, Schänzlestr. 1, 79104 Freiburg, Germany
Cluster of Excellence livMatS @ FIT—Freiburg Center for Interactive Materials and Bioinspired Technologies, University of Freiburg, Georges-Köhler-Allee 105, D-79110 Freiburg, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Biomimetics 2019, 4(1), 26;
Received: 10 December 2018 / Revised: 25 February 2019 / Accepted: 26 February 2019 / Published: 20 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biogenic and Bioinspired Self-Healing Materials)
During the 3.8 billion years of biological evolution, a multitude of functional principles has been developed in all kingdoms of life enabling the sealing and healing of diverse types of damage. Inspired by this treasure trove, biologists and engineers have become increasingly interested in learning from biological insights for the development of self-repairing materials. In this review, particular attention is paid to the systematic transfer of knowledge from wound reactions in biological role models to technical applications with self-repair function. This knowledge transfer includes bioinspiration in terms of the conscious implementation of an idea from nature or biomimetics in the form of a systematic transfer of underlying functional principles found in selected biological role models. The current overview presents a selection of breakthroughs regarding bioinspired or biomimetic self-repairing materials, including the initial basic publications and the recent publications of the last eight years. Each reviewed publication is presented with reference to three key criteria: (i) self-repair mechanisms in plants or animals as role models; (ii) knowledge transfer from living nature to technology; and (iii) bioinspired or biomimetic materials with self-repair function. Finally, damage control is discussed with a focus on damage prevention and damage management. View Full-Text
Keywords: self-sealing; self-healing; plants; animals; functional principle; damage control; damage prevention; damage management self-sealing; self-healing; plants; animals; functional principle; damage control; damage prevention; damage management
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Speck, O.; Speck, T. An Overview of Bioinspired and Biomimetic Self-Repairing Materials. Biomimetics 2019, 4, 26.

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