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Ceramic Materials

Ceramic materials refer to a type of inorganic non-metallic materials made of natural or synthetic compounds through forming and high-temperature sintering. It has the advantages of melting point, high hardness, high wear resistance and oxidation resistance. It can be used as structural material and tool material. Because ceramics also have some special properties, they can also be used as functional materials.

Applications:

Due to the advantages of rich variety, excellent performance, ceramic materials have a wide range of applications in the fields of medicine, filtration and separation, catalysis and public art.

  • Filtration: Porous ceramic materials are often used as filter materials due to their internal pore structure. The porous ceramic material is made into corresponding filtering devices according to different filtering purposes. Based on the characteristics of the porous ceramic material itself, the filtering effect of the manufactured filtering device is remarkable. Porous ceramic materials can not only filter common solutions such as water and oil, but also filter chemical solutions. In short, the porous ceramic material is widely used as a filter material due to its high filtration efficiency and the large variety of filterable solutions.
  • Ceramic filter Figure 1. Ceramic filter

  • Medicine: Total hip replacement (THA) is one of the most mature surgical procedures. Ceramic materials have the advantages of high hardness and wear resistance, which can reduce the wear particles generated on the joint surface and reduce the risk of osteolysis and loosening of the prosthesis around the prosthesis, thereby extending the life of the artificial joint. Ceramic materials are often good materials for the preparation of artificial hip joints and have a very wide range of applications in the medical field. At present, there are three main ceramic materials for artificial hip replacement, namely alumina, zirconia and zirconia toughened alumina composite ceramics. Alumina ceramic is the first ceramic material used in artificial hip joints. However, due to the low purity, low density, and high brittleness of alumina ceramics, it is easy to cause the fracture of alumina ceramic joints. Therefore, sintering aid MgO is often added when preparing joint materials to help reduce the sintering temperature and improve the performance of ceramics. Zirconia (ZrO2) ceramic has good corrosion resistance and biocompatibility, and its fracture toughness and bending strength are better than alumina ceramics, so it is a better material for preparing artificial hip joints. Alumina-zirconia is currently the most studied composite ceramic material in medicine. It can be used in the preparation of artificial hip joints, and adding suitable additives can synthesize the good performance of alumina and zirconia.
  • Ceramic material used in artificial joint preparation Figure 2. Ceramic material used in artificial joint preparation

  • Public art: Ceramic materials can be preserved for a long time and have original pure beauty, so applying ceramics to public art has great value. Architecture is an indispensable part of public art. At the same time, it is also the main structure of a modern city, which can effectively reflect the main style and design concept of the city. The application of ceramic materials in urban architecture can not only convey humanistic care, but also bring visual impact to art. For example, in some large-scale public building projects, ceramic walls will be set up in the interior and exterior of the building. In projects such as subways and airports, some parts will be decorated with ceramic art. Of course, modern ceramic applications also include reliefs, which can break the two-dimensional limitation of ceramic decoration and use three-dimensional ceramic textures to show modern public art.
  • Other fields: Ceramic matrix composites are materials with ceramics as the main raw material, also known as multiphase composite ceramics. This type of material not only has the advantages of high strength, high hardness, high temperature resistance, wear resistance, low thermal conductivity and low thermal expansion coefficient, but also can meet the performance requirements that organic materials and metal materials cannot meet in practical applications. Therefore, the silicon carbide ceramic matrix composite material is an ideal high-temperature structural material, which can be used in the manufacture of tunnel kiln cars and the preparation of heat transfer elements for air preheaters.

References:

  1. Zhang, Yongfeng. (2019), "Ceramic Materials for Nuclear Energy Applications." JOM 71(12), 4806-4807.
  2. SUN Guangchao. (2018), "Processing and Properties of Flexible Hot Gas Sealing Materials for Ceramic Membrane." China's Refractories 37(4), 1004-4493.
  3. M, Rys Matejczuk. (2013), "Corrosion behaviour of ceramic filter candle materials for hot gas filtration under biomass gasification conditions at 850℃." Advances in Applied Ceramics 112(8), 466-470.

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