Secret to 'self-healing' glass accidentally discovered by Japanese researchers

Viral       by Dawood Rehman | Published

An accidental discovery by researchers in Japan may bring a solution to the vulnerability of mobile screens. He also found that the material reverted back to its original strength after being left alone for a few hours.

The discovery could be a boon for consumers who are forced to walk around with broken screens on their phones, provided companies decide to use it in their designs.

Research team from Tokyo University has prepared this new theory that molds back fractured pieces of glass with capacity of built-in fix using semi-transparent polymer, foreign media sources shared. They are calling this material, Polyether-thioureas, which was accidentally discovered by a University of Tokyo graduate student Yu Yanagisawa.

To date, scientists have already come up with rubber, plastic, and concrete self-healing materials. He claims that the glass could eventually be used on smartphone screens and similar devices.

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Japanese researchers led by Professor Takuzo Aida at the University of Tokyo have created a new glass technology that would help a display automatically heal itself when it's cracked or breaks. When pressed with slight pressure by hand at 21 degrees Celsius, the cut polymers formed a strong sheet. He said: "I hope the repairable glass becomes a new environment-friendly material that avoids the need to be thrown away if broken".

"High mechanical robustness and healing ability tend to be mutually exclusive", the researchers wrote in their paper.

The researchers said the glass is "highly robust mechanically yet can readily be repaired by compression at fractured surfaces". Many other types of "self-healing" glass require some kind of heat, but this new polymer can be repaired at room temperature just by pressing down on it with your hand. This isn't the first time we've seen self-repairing phone tech, of course, with screen protectors that heal themselves and a Motorola patent for a self-repairing screen.

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