What is ceramic
Ceramic is one of the most important materials used for ages, and its use has become widespread with the development of techniques for designing and manufacturing ceramics. The word “ceramic” is a Greek word (keramikos) meaning potter or pot maker and refers to materials obtained from raising high temperatures.
And when we look around we find ceramic material almost everywhere, the many features of ceramic make it the perfect choice for many uses. In this article, we will discuss the advantages and uses of ceramics and everything you need to know about this material, including components and types.
Ceramic components and How are they made?
The composition of the ceramic material is one of the complex chemical structures, and it is more complex than the mineral structures, and the ceramic material is a non-metallic and inorganic material, and it consists mainly of clay and earth materials (clay, feldspar, silicate sand and lime...) in addition to chemicals such as oxide Iron, sodium hydroxide and some colourants.
When manufacturing, clay is first prepared, which is the basic material on which the ceramic design is built, and the basic body is obtained. Previously, the makers used to dig, extract and shape the clay manually, but now with the development of industry, manufacturers are buying ready-made clay objects from local suppliers, Until this stage is bypassed without trouble and loss of time.
At this stage, the materials to be used are described, and these materials are tested and processed according to the evaluations and specifications to be used.
Secondly, the materials used are ground in a huge mill to produce a substance called quartz, and then this substance is placed in a closed machine with a very high temperature that contains water. This process helps to dry the material and prevents internal contractions of the material making it one solid material that is easy to shape.
Some ceramic products are subjected to a crystallization process, such as products used in electrical insulators, dining utensils and tiles, in addition to a final process, which is the polishing process to suit the required geometric shape.
Among these stages is the process of decoration and shaping, as the ornate shapes produced from ceramic material have a distinct shape from other materials.
The Features Of Ceramic
Ceramic is the product of the integration of several materials, and therefore the materials used can be controlled according to demand and use, so chemicals have been used that control the strength, hardness and properties of this produced material.
And here are some of the most important features of ceramic material:
- Its hardness and high resistance to pressure and fracture.
- Its resistance to water and cleaning materials, is chemically inert and does not affect and does not interact with the chemical elements used in cleaning materials, and its outer layer is smooth and does not contain any dirt or stains.
- It is resistant to dust, moisture and abrasion, which makes its life longer than that of marble and other building materials.
- Its cost is not high compared to other building materials, despite its high strength and quality.
- Low coefficient of friction and makes it cleanable and does not require special materials or methods for cleaning, and that is why it is widely used in bathrooms and kitchens.
- It can be shaped and decorated in many different shapes, and a glossy layer can be added to its outer surface, which adds a wonderful lustre and an attractive appearance.
Types Of Ceramic
As we mentioned, ceramic is a material that results from mixing several materials, and this facilitates the production of many different types of ceramics, and they were produced according to the properties required for use.
There are 3 traditional types of ceramics:
1- Porcelain: includes glazed or unglazed utensils, used in the manufacture of cooking utensils, vases, cups and tiles, and is usually white.
2- Claystone: It is dense pottery that is burnt to high degrees, and is stronger than other types.
3- And there is another type which is a highly heat-resistant material, and it is a strong material and is used in bathroom and kitchen tiles and some sculptures, and is used in some engineering applications.
A type of ceramic is called advanced or engineering ceramics:
In the manufacture of traditional ceramics, some problems appeared due to the pores and cracks that result when combining materials, and with the spread of the use of ceramics in modern applications (industrial, electrical, thermal and mechanical applications.....) ceramics were developed and engineering ceramics were produced by reducing the resulting holes and cracks to appear a stronger and more resistant form.
The Uses Of Ceramics
With the many features and the development of ceramic manufacturing techniques, its uses have varied in many places, and there are many applications, and we will mention some of them:
1 - Ceramic is used in construction as a basic element, especially in kitchen and bathroom tiles because of its durability and resistance to water and detergents.
2- Crockery and kitchen utensils.
3- Toilets and basins.
4- The high resistance to heat made ceramics one of the materials used in the mechanical industries, as it is used in the manufacture of turbines that operate at a large temperature, in addition to its entry into the industries of modern spacecraft.
5- Its high resistance to corrosion and its insulation made it also included in electrical engineering applications, and it is used in electrical insulators and some electronic devices.
Things to consider when choosing ceramics
When choosing ceramics, several things must be considered based on the place and influencing factors:
- Size: The size is chosen according to the place to be used, and it is usually square or rectangular.
- Design and shaping: It must be shaped accurately, its edges are perfect and without breaks, and it must have a flat surface.
High water absorption ceramic: This type is characterized by a smooth surface and is also characterized by not transmitting sound between layers, and it is used in bedrooms and corridors.
Ceramic with low water absorption: It is characterized by closed pores, resists frost and is used in floors and walls of kitchens and bathrooms, and is used in outdoor areas exposed to rain and moisture.
- Choosing a specialized technician for the installation of ceramics: Where the ceramic compound must be experienced, when installing ceramics, the dimensions and spaces must be maintained very accurately.
- The colour to be used: Choosing a suitable colour for the place to be used. Some prefer blue and white for bathrooms and kitchens, while in bedrooms, different colours are used according to demand.
- Coating: The coating is very important as it gives the exterior and final appearance of the ceramic, and it must be chosen carefully to resist corrosion and protect the lower layers of the ceramic from cleaning materials and external factors.
As we mentioned earlier, ceramics are not considered high costs, and their prices vary according to demand. Many factors affect the price of ceramics, including corrosion resistance, paint quality, materials used in its manufacture and other factors.
Finally, ceramics is the most important building and design material in our time, so that it has been of great importance throughout the ages. We find it used in construction and making pots and pottery since ancient times.
Ceramics have many advantages that we mentioned in the above article. It gives an elegant shape in addition to its suitability in many places and uses. The same group also provides the most luxurious and finest types of ceramics suitable for all needs and tastes.