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Robots to Gain T-1000-like Self-Repair Functions

What makes the Robot Apocalypse such a horrifying prospect is that it portrays machines as indestructible. While robots in the real world are as sensitive to a head-on car collision as your average Joe, they're more durable and relentless in fictional work, like the Terminator franchise. One of the worst offenders is the T-1000, a robotic Robert Patrick whose mimetic poly-alloy structure lets it repair any damage in a flash.

Well, it looks like this is one aspect of fictional robotics that's starting to catch up with reality. Researchers at Arizona State designed a system that lets synthetics recreate the natural healing process found in organics. It uses shape-memory or mimetic polymers embedded with a network of fiber optics. The network senses any damage to the system, then delivers heat to the "wounded" area to repair it.

Looks like '90s-era Christian Bale is screwed.

[source: Journal of Applied Physics via Fast Company]