This self repair system is based upon harmless ground borne bacteria as the self-healing agent. The bacteria are activated after the concrete is cracked and the bacterial spores are exposed to moisture and air. The bacterial reproduction process creates a calcite by-product which fills the cracks in the concrete. By sealing the cracks in concrete, an effective barrier to air or liquid borne deleterious materials are formed and as a consequence of this, enhanced durability is achieved in the structure, resulting in lower life cycle costs.
The concrete/mortar prisms were cracked and tested for water flow. They were then left for 56 days to heal and were subject to a test for water tightness. Healing was observed and a reduced water flow (74% and 32% healed) measured with the healed samples when compared to the specimens that were cracked and subjected to a water flow test without any healing agent. The number of samples were limited and a larger scale test is recommended for further work; however, this is a proof of concept of the process of healing and testing.