Concept

Ceramic engineering

Summary
Ceramic engineering is the science and technology of creating objects from inorganic, non-metallic materials. This is done either by the action of heat, or at lower temperatures using precipitation reactions from high-purity chemical solutions. The term includes the purification of raw materials, the study and production of the chemical compounds concerned, their formation into components and the study of their structure, composition and properties. Ceramic materials may have a crystalline or partly crystalline structure, with long-range order on atomic scale. Glass ceramics may have an amorphous or glassy structure, with limited or short-range atomic order. They are either formed from a molten mass that solidifies on cooling, formed and matured by the action of heat, or chemically synthesized at low temperatures using, for example, hydrothermal or sol-gel synthesis. The special character of ceramic materials gives rise to many applications in materials engineering, electrical engineering, chemical engineering and mechanical engineering. As ceramics are heat resistant, they can be used for many tasks for which materials like metal and polymers are unsuitable. Ceramic materials are used in a wide range of industries, including mining, aerospace, medicine, refinery, food and chemical industries, packaging science, electronics, industrial and transmission electricity, and guided lightwave transmission. The word "ceramic" is derived from the Greek word κεραμικός (keramikos) meaning pottery. It is related to the older Indo-European language root "to burn". "Ceramic" may be used as a noun in the singular to refer to a ceramic material or the product of ceramic manufacture, or as an adjective. Ceramics is the making of things out of ceramic materials. Ceramic engineering, like many sciences, evolved from a different discipline by today's standards. Materials science engineering is grouped with ceramics engineering to this day. Abraham Darby first used coke in 1709 in Shropshire, England, to improve the yield of a smelting process.
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