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Ceramics

Lawrence Livermore Engineer Xiaoyu 'Rayne' Zheng studies a macroscale version of the unit ...

Imagine materials strong enough to use in building airplanes or motor cars, yet are literally lighter than air. Soon, that may not be so hard to do because a team of researchers from MIT and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) have developed new ultra-lightweight materials that are as light as aerogel, but 10,000 times stiffer, and may one day revolutionize aerospace and automotive designs.  Read More

Unwanted toilets may soon have new life, as a component of cement  (Photo: Shutterstock)

An international team of researchers has discovered a potential new use for discarded toilets, along with other ceramic waste such as basins, stoneware and bricks. It turns out that they can be made into a more eco-friendly form of cement.  Read More

The synthetic mother-of-pearl ceramic (left) and its natural counterpart

Although you may know it simply as the shiny iridescent stuff on the inside of mollusk shells, mother-of-pearl (or nacre) is a remarkable material. It allows those shells, which otherwise consist almost entirely of brittle calcium carbonate, to stand up to the abuses of life in the sea. Now, a team led by the Laboratoire de Synthèse et Fonctionnalisation des Céramiques (CNRS) in Paris, has copied the structure of nacre to create a ceramic material that's almost 10 times stronger than conventional ceramics.  Read More

The new coating protects airplane engine components from heat damage, while lasting longer...

The higher the temperature at which an aircraft engine is able to run, the more efficiently it uses fuel. In order to run at those high temperatures, the metal components of airplane engines are presently treated with heat-shielding coatings. Scientists at Sweden's University West, however, are developing a new such coating that is said to be far more effective than anything presently used – it could extend the service life of engines by 300 percent.  Read More

Don't throw those eggshells away – they could be made into ceramics (Photo: Shutterstock)

According to the US Department of Agriculture, every year approximately 455,000 tons (412,769 tonnes) of discarded eggshells must be transported and disposed of in the US alone. Now, however, scientists at the University of Aveiro in Portugal have developed a method of using such eggshell waste in the production of ceramic goods.  Read More

'William,' a blue faience hippopotamus of the 12th Dynasty, in the Metropolitan Museum of ...

We like to think of technology as always being forward looking. It’s supposed to be about nanoparticles and the Cloud, not steam engines and the telephone exchange. But every now and again the past reaches out, taps the 21st century on the shoulder and says, “Have a look at this.” That’s what happened to Professor Stephen Hoskins, Director of the University of West England, Bristol's Centre for Fine Print Research. He is currently working on a way of printing 3D ceramics that are self-glazing, thanks to a 7,000-year old technology from ancient Egypt.  Read More

Designer Bernat Cuni made one cup a day for thirty days  (Image: Cunicode)

Prolific Spanish designer Bernat Cuni has come up with a whimsical way to help bring the relatively new 3D ceramic printing process into the mainstream. Recently, he unleashed his creative energies on what he termed the "coffee cup-a-day" project to highlight the versatility and immediacy of what is also known as "additive manufacturing" - the layer by layer construction of tangible objects from digital models. The results, while not necessarily the most utilitarian, could be just the thing for the coffee drinker who has it all.  Read More

The ceramic speaker is thinner than the music player feeding it tunes

Design company Nendo has joined forces with Masagasu Mitsuke to create a super thin ceramic speaker set for a project aimed at injecting some new life into traditional Japanese crafts. Normally hidden away in such things as LED lighting, the ceramic substrate used for the creation is boldly brought out into the open for a striking piece of functional art.  Read More

Dr. Simone Kondruweit, Dr. Lothar Schafer, Dr. Markus Hofer, Markus Armgard of IST where t...

Diamonds aren’t just a girl’s best friend - they also boast outstanding physical properties that makes them an ideal material for industrial applications such as cutting and polishing. It is extraordinarily hard, conducts heat well and is practically inert to chemical substances. Ceramics – particularly high-performance ceramics – are likewise able to demonstrate special qualities. They are robust and withstands high temperatures. Researchers have now created a diamond coated ceramics composite material that combines the best of both materials.  Read More

A variety of ceramic products (Photo: CEREL-CC)

When you think of shaping ceramics, you probably think of a potter spinning a clay pot on a wheel, or perhaps even yourself making that piggy bank in art class. In reality, the term “ceramic” encompasses a lot more than fired clay, and shaping some of the more exotic forms can be quite involved. Researchers from North Carolina State University (NCSU), however, have recently discovered a new way of shaping ceramics. It should be much more energy-efficient than present methods, making the entire process more cost-effective and environmentally-friendly.  Read More

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