An extraordinary metal was found in the debris that came from the UFO that crashed in Roswell, New Mexico in July of 1947--It was so thin, you could bend it and it would spring back into its original shape, but so tough that a bullet couldn't be fired through it. Now we're close to making the same thing ourselves! (NOTE: Subscribers can still listen to these shows).
Researchers have created a material that may be able to not only sense damage but to even heal it, mimicking the ability of biological systems such as bone to sense the presence of damage, halt its progression, and regenerate itself. The material system is capable of increasing the toughness of a specimen by 11 times. After toughening the specimen, the crack can be closed using the shape-memory effect to recover an unprecedented 96% of the object's original strength. In fact, after the crack is closed, the new material is nearly five times as tough as the original specimen.