Researchers at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have developed a self-healing cement that can repair fractures and fill cracks.

They added a polymer to increase cement elasticity, reduce crack size and provide the potential for long-term cost savings for the geothermal industry.This game-changing combination uses a flexible ingredient, a polymer, to repair fractured surfaces and fill cracks, minimizing mechanical failure risks and offering a sustainable energy source.

Chemist Carlos Fernandez and his team in collaboration with Simerjeet Gill of Brookhaven National Laboratory, detail the polymer’s healing properties and how it can improve the mechanical performance of cement in a paper, “Insights into the physical and chemical properties of a cement-polymer composite developed for geothermal wellbore applications,” in Cement and Concrete Composites.