The demand for self-healing elastomers is increasing due to the potential opportunities such materials offer in reducing down-time and cost through extended product lifetimes and reduction of waste. However, further understanding of self-healing mechanisms and processes is required in order to develop a wider range of commercially applicable materials with self-healing properties. Epoxidized natural rubber (ENR) is a derivative of polyisoprene. ENR25 and ENR50 are commercially available materials with 25 and 50 mol % epoxidation, respectively. Recently, reports of the use of ENR in self-healing materials have begun to emerge. However, to date, there has been limited analysis of the self-healing mechanism at the molecular level. The aim of this work is to gain understanding of the relevant self-healing mechanisms through systematic characterization and analysis of the effect of cross-linking on the self-healing performance of ENR and natural rubber (NR). In our study, cross-linking of ENR and NR with dicumyl peroxide and sulfur to provide realistic models of commercial rubber formulations is described, and a cross-linking density of 5 × 10-5 mol cm-3 in sulfur-cured ENR is demonstrated to achieve a healing efficiency of 143% for the tensile strength. This work provides the foundation for further modification of ENR, with the goal of understanding and controlling ENR's self-healing ability for future applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15098-15105
Number of pages8
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)


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