The MASTRO project overall objective is to develop intelligent bulk materials for smart applications in the transport sector incorporating several self-responsiveness properties. The aim is to increase consumer safety, component life-span, and performance, while reducing maintenance and manufacturing costs and through-life greenhouse gas emissions. Self-responsiveness functionalities will be achieved by incorporating electrical conductive nanomaterials like multi walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) and graphite-based nanomaterials into smart lightweight polymer composites together with asphalt and concrete formulations. These self-responsive functionalities are based on three physical phenomena: piezoresistivity (variation of the electrical resistivity of a material when mechanical strain is applied), Joule’s first law effect (the relationship between heat generated in a conductor and electrical current flow, resistance, and time), and electrostatic dissipation (to protect a material from electrostatic discharge).
The functionality of the intelligent bulk materials will be incorporated in various critical transport sector components, such as aircraft wing leading edges, car bumpers, and pavements. These components will be demonstrated under relevant conditions at prototype level for the aerospace, automotive, and transport infrastructure sectors. These developments will be supported by theoretical predictive modelling, material modelling, and an ICT platform for smart monitoring and control. The outputs of the project will consist of numerous applications in the mentioned sectors. Thus, nanotechnologies and advanced materials will be the basis for next generation of high added value products, boosting EU market opportunities.