Taking a cue from Swamp Thing sprouting new limbs and geckos regrowing their tails, Nissan originally developed their self-healing paint back in 2005, using a highly elastic resin to prevent scratches on the inner layers of a car's paint job.
Now the company says they are doing trial runs on a batch of iPhone case prototypes, marking the first time self-healing paint has been tested on non-automotive products in Europe.
The paint is made from polyrotaxane, which has a chemical structure capable of mending itself by changing back to its original form and filling in gaps from scratches. Small scratches can "heal" in an hour, while deeper scratches might take up to a week. Nissan also says the paint offers better grip due to its more gel-like surface — good news for all of us butter fingers out there with shattered smartphone screens.
"We like to think laterally by taking the great innovations we've got from an automotive point of view, and looking at how they could be applied to improve everyday issues," Bob Laishley, Program Director of Business Development in Europe, said in a Nissan press release.
The Scratch Shield iPhone cases are currently compatible with the iPhone 4 and 4S. If trial runs of the prototype go well, Nissan plans to release the cases later this year.