Ceramic is a solid material that is composed of a mixture of inorganic materials combined with a bonding agent. The mixture of materials used to create ceramics can vary depending on the final result, but most include varieties of clay mixed with water. The process starts with combining powdered materials with liquid before pouring the mixture into a mold or hand molding it into a shape. The mold or shape is left to dry and then placed in a kiln to be fired at a high temperature. Once removed, the object can be left unglazed or glazed with a protective surface coating.
Generally, ceramic has low VOC and is free of formaldehyde and PVC. Ceramics have a high melting point and as a result are inherently heat-resistant and non-combustible. It has a considerably high durability, hardness, and strength, and is nonreactive with other chemicals.
Traditional objects made from ceramic include earthenware, stoneware, brick, and porcelain. These categories differentiate in the clay mixture used and the fired temperatures while processing, creating different final products. More advanced mixtures of ceramic are not always clay-based and may include metallic components in the mixture. Ceramic can be found in many products, including pottery and bakeware, tiles and mosaics, sinks and toilets, bricks and cement blocks, and industrial equipment like hand dryers, magnets, and electrical fittings.
- The American Ceramic Society
- TCNA: Ceramic Tile: For a Safe and Healthy Home
- TCNA: Tile Council of North America
→ This definition has been shared with permission by our peers at Knowledge Bank™.