Self-healing concrete?

By discovering bacteria that thrive on calcium lactate, during respiration, the release of CO2 can precipitate CaCO3, or limestone- which is a key ingredient for cement. The key here is that 1) the bacteria were discovered in the ‘soda lakes’- high pH/alkaline lakes- in Russia and Egypt that can thrive in such extreme conditions, and 2) the bacteria can remain dormant for up to 200 years– without consuming lactate to grow! This second point is useful for crack formation in the concrete- when cracks occur, water seeps in and ‘activates’ the bacteria, essentially dispersing the spores and I assume shuttling the lactate thru the bacterial membrane. Jonkers and co. are working on a liquid spray to ‘heal’ existing concrete, with the organic concrete soon to come! Great stuff from TU Delft 🙂

Self-healing bioconcrete

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