Casey Kristin Frye
Jan 30, 2012

Smart paint could revolutionize structural safety

The University of Strathclyde in Glasgow is developing an innovative low-cost smart paint that can detect microscopic faults in wind turbines, mines and bridges before structural damage occurs. The paint is formed using a recycled waste product known as fly ash and highly aligned carbon nanotubes. When mixed it has a cement-like property which makes it particularly useful in harsh environments.The smart paint can be simply sprayed onto any surface, with electrodes attached to detect structural damage long before failure occurs. A prototype has been developed and tests have shown the paint to be highly effective; it is hoped further tests will be carried out in Glasgow in the near future.