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Broken microcapsules leave impressions seen through a microscope after a healing agent has bled out in a fracture plane of a composite material. (B. Blaiszik, University of Illinois)

How Things Work: Self-Healing Airplanes

Several technologies that could put mechanics out of work.

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Tom LeCompte won a 2009 Aerospace Journalist of the Year award for his Air & Space article “The Disorient Express” (Aug./Sept. 2008).

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