Ceramic Manufacturing Companies and Suppliers

IQS Directory provides a comprehensive list of ceramic manufacturers and suppliers. Use our website to review and source top ceramic manufacturers with roll over ads and detailed product descriptions. Find ceramic companies that can design, engineer, and manufacture ceramics to your companies specifications. Then contact the ceramic companies through our quick and easy request for quote form. Website links, company profile, locations, phone, product videos and product information is provided for each company. Access customer reviews and keep up to date with product new articles. Whether you are looking for manufacturers of ceramic rings, ceramic products, or customized ceramics of every type, this is the resource for you.

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ARTICLES AND PRESS RELEASES

  • Astro Met, Inc., Providing Advanced Ceramic Solutions since 1961.

    Ceramics Since 1961, Astro Met, Inc. has been engineering and manufacturing advanced ceramic components from zirconia, alumina, zirconia toughened alumina, and machinable ceramics. Our products provide solutions to demanding wear, corrosion, thermal, and electrical applications. We specialize in precision tolerance advanced ceramic components in both prototype and production quantities. Read more......

  • Precise Ceramic Machining from Kadco Ceramics

    Ceramics Since 1980, Kadco Ceramics has been a leading supplier of ceramic and diamond machining services. We pride ourselves on providing unique solutions for shaping hard materials, and we continue to look for new ways to serve our valued customers. Our highly skilled and experienced engineers work directly with our customers to assist with material selection, basic design issues, and engineering problems. Direct communication with our customers enables us to successfully satisfy our customers' needs in quality, delivery, and price, and that is our #1 goal. Read more......

  • IQS Featured Profile: International Ceramic Engineering

    Ceramic Manufacturing Founded by Merrill W. Bud Higgins and his two sons in 1987, International Ceramic Engineering (ICE) is a family owned and operated company that has grown significantly over the last fifteen years. When it comes to our offering of performance plastic and advanced ceramic materials, quality is ICE's number one priority. Read More......

  • Ceramic Manufacturing: What Can You Grind?

    Ceramic is a hard material that is used for a wide variety of applications. In many industries, ceramic is used to make heating elements, computer parts, circuitry, pipes, decorative objects, and much more. Ceramic grindings require a series of specialized tools depending on the type of project and what shape the final ceramic will have. In addition to ceramic, most ceramic grinding companies can also grind materials like aluminum oxide, carbon, ferrite, mullite, porcelain, gemstones, silicone carbide, quartz, and many other solid and composite materials. Most ceramic grindings occur in...

  • Ceramic Manufacturing: Unlocking Our Past, Building Our Future

    by Breana Cronk, IQS Editor Having graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology, I have grown accustomed to the fact that some of the things that I find most fascinating in this world may be a little bland to those around me. Conversations about ancient plant residue, migration theory, bones and ritual oddly enough do not always seem to pan out unless speaking with a professor or classmate. One area of cultural study that reaches beyond this limited group, however, is ceramic manufacturing. Museums around the world cater to...

Industry Information

Ceramic Manufacturing

In the simplest terms, ceramic manufacturing is the technique of creating ceramic materials that can support a wide range of high-tech engineering products and machineries. As their name implies, these items are made from ceramics, usually clay and other non-metallic materials. The material components are mixed with highly pure chemical solutions to meet the strength of the machine they support.

Applications

Typically, people associate ceramics with artistic and decorative pottery made from clay and other composite materials. Industrial ceramics, however, although made using the same materials, serve different purposes. Industrial ceramics are used to provide support to machines or machine parts, and to enhance the yield of manufacturing processes. Nowadays, ceramics are designed and engineered to be industrial-strength products. The ceramic industry has customers all across the board.

Industries that rely on ceramic parts and products include: aerospace, automotives, military and defense, medicine and healthcare, power generation, refractory, industrial, food processing, chemical, and construction.

Products Produced

Ceramic products can be broken up into four main categories: structural ceramics, refractories, whitewares, and technical ceramics, also known as engineering ceramics or advanced ceramics.

Structural ceramic products include things like brick shapes and ceramic tiles; refractory ceramic products include kiln linings and crucibles; whiteware products include bone china for dining and other decorative pottery. Finally, technical ceramic parts include high-performance ceramic parts used in aerospace, nuclear power, bio-medical, military, defense and automotive applications that require exceptional heat resistance or insulation, wear and corrosion resistance.

A fifth, lesser used ceramic product category is electrical ceramics, which includes items like ceramic insulators, capacitors, magnets, and superconductors.

Other products made via ceramic manufacturing include electric motor parts, ceramic magnet parts, ceramic balls, ceramic rods, ceramic blades and rotary bearings use with wind turbines and jet engines, ceramic insulators, ceramic spacers, shuttle tiles, floor tiles, ceramic tubes, prosthetic limbs, bone and teeth replacements, body armor, chemical and environment ceramics (fibers, membranes, and catalysts), and ceramic coatings surface protection and temperature regulation.


Ceramic Manufacturing
Ceramic Manufacturing
Ceramic Manufacturing
Ceramic Manufacturing – LSP Industrial Ceramics, Inc.
Ceramic Manufacturing – LSP Industrial Ceramics, Inc. – C-Mac International, LLC
Ceramic Manufacturing – LSP Industrial Ceramics, Inc. – C-Mac International, LLC
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Ceramic Manufacturing
Ceramic Manufacturing
Ceramic Manufacturing – International Ceramic Engineering
Ceramic Manufacturing – International Ceramic Engineering
Ceramic Manufacturing – LSP Industrial Ceramics, Inc.



History

The concept of using ceramics to meet numerous needs in our daily lives and industrial production is not new. Rather, we have been using clay-based pottery for thousands of years. However, modern industrial ceramics can be traced back to as recently as the 1700s.

It all started in 1709 when Abraham Darby used coke combined with clay to improve the efficiency of the smelting process at his production facility. It was the first known and noted evidence of ceramic engineering in recent human history. Fifty years later, in Stoke-On-Trent, England, a man named Josiah Wedgwood opened the first ceramics manufacturing factory.

Ceramics got a big boost in 1888, when Austrian chemist Carl Josef Bayer developed a process for separating aluminum from bauxite ore. This process, which is still used today, made it easier and less expensive to create diverse ceramics. Earlier that decade, in 1880, brothers Pierre and Jacques Curie discovered piezoelectricity, which is a key property of electroceramics, sometimes known as piezoelectric ceramic manufacturing. In 1893, E.G. Acheson invented a process for creating synthetic silicon carbide, another popular ceramic material.

During the first half of the 20th century, chemists continued to discover new and refine existing ceramic materials, while engineers and manufacturers continued to fine-tune and expand the processes used to make ceramic products. Thanks to these improvements, ceramics were widely used in the production of arms and safety equipment during the World War II.

Today, the ceramic industry is reaching for new horizons, as chemists create more and more capable ceramic material compounds. For example, they have managed to synthesize hydroxyapatite, which is the natural mineral component of bone. By using this process to form ceramic material, manufacturers have been able to branch out into the field of bio-ceramics, and create products like synthetic bones and dental implants. What’s more, trains in Japan now use the Meissner effect with ceramic magnets to create levitation. With all these new developments and research, there is little for which ceramics may not be used in the future. l

Materials Process

Alumina Ceramics

    Aluminum oxide is a heavily used material in industrial ceramics. Primarily leveraged in semiconductor compounds and electrical insulation systems, alumina ceramics can be labeled as the one of the most advanced and strongest materials. You can make this ceramic following a number of processes, such as isostatic pressing and injection molding. The best feature of these materials is that they provide hard surface and can be given a superior surface finish for their exact application requirement.

    More technically, alumina is a material that is considered chemically stable due to its high ionic atomic bonding properties. Being a high ionic material, alumina works as a great electrical insulator. Another advantage of alumina is that it shows a strong resistance to corrosion and damage.

Steatite Ceramics

    Made from magnesium silicate, steatite ceramics offer a more advanced option to work as an electrical insulator. These ceramics offer strength, durability, and insulation. Because of their outstanding insulation properties, steatite is used in the designing and formation of thermostats. This material is a key ceramic component in an array of residential and commercial electrical parts.

Zirconia Ceramics

    Zirconia is the key element in brilliantly designed automotive oxygen sensors and dental ceramics. Having a high resistance to corrosion and breakage, this material is a great choice for the ceramic manufacturing of highly sensitive and well-used components. Wear and abrasion are definitely not concerns for manufacturers who use zirconium ceramics.

Silicon Carbide Ceramics

    Silicon carbide ceramics are created using the modicums of silicon carbide under high pressure and intensity, in a process known as sintering. The ceramics that result from the combination of this material and this process are very strong and durable. For that reason, these ceramics are used in the production of automotive brakes and clutches.

Mullite Ceramics

    Since mullite is a rare material on earth, it is an expensive substitute for commonplace ceramic applications. However, mullite ceramics have no match when strength and high temperature resistance are required. The material can be used for applications that work within high thermal expansion and low-pressure conditions while needing low thermal conductivity.

Clay

    Ceramic parts produced using clay materials include earthenware, stoneware, porcelain, and bone china. It is not typically used to make industrial ceramic parts.

Process Details

The traditional manufacture process of industrial ceramic products follows multiple stages that include milling, batching, forming, drying, and sintering.

  • Milling: In this process, a raw material is given a desired small shape. Milling of a raw material has different sub-stages, which include destructing, compressing and impacting.
  • Batching: This stage of the process involves exercises like amassing the materials, according to the pre-defined ceramic preparation method. It also includes additive manufacture.
  • Mixing: In this step, the ceramic ingredients are mixed through various procedures and machines. Often, they are turned into slurries through the addition of water or another liquid additive.
  • Forming: After the base has been prepared, the actual formation of the ceramic components begins. There are several forming processes that manufacturers use to create ceramic parts. These include processes such as slip casting, pressing, extrusion, and injection molding.
  • For mass production, slip casting works quite well. It’s especially well-suited for complex shapes, thin walls, and sanitary ware. Pressing methods like hot pressing and hot isostatic pressing work best with advanced ceramics. Molding processes like extrusion and injection molding work best in the creation of more simple ceramic mold parts, like pipes and tubes.

  • Drying: After the ceramic has been formed, it is allowed to dry out completely. This process solidifies the shape of the ceramic.
  • Sintering: To complete the forming process, manufacturers put the ceramic piece, known as a greenware, in an extremely oven or chimney. Sintering strengthens a ceramic part by causing its oxides to bond and desificate. During this chemical change, both ionic and covalent bonds are formed and create the ceramic’s crystal structure. This process involves cations; the ionic structure is determined when you calculate the difference of electronegativity between cations and anions.

After forming is finished, manufacturers can put ceramic parts through secondary processes like glazing, polishing, grinding, cutting, or machining.

Design

During the ceramic manufacture process, the key concern of product designers is to create something that fits well with the design and engineering of the application. To do so, they consider factors like the materials, which all offer different qualities, very carefully. Oxides (ex. silica, zirconia) and non-oxides (ex. silicon nitride, silicon carbide), for instance, hold different properties of translucency, hardness, corrosion resistance, heat resistance, wear, weight, microwave absorption and heat insulation. Aluminum oxide and boron carbide, for example, are both exceptionally hard, and therefore useful in armoring applications.

Machinery Used

To manufacture ceramics, suppliers rely on the assistant of machines like ovens for sintering, silicone or metal molds, rubber extrusion machines, injection molding machines, and computer programs for creating blueprints.

Any ceramic manufacturing system can be customized to fit the application(s) on which it is working. Customizations are typically based on factors like required production volume and speed, quality requirements, shape complexity, and secondary processes.

Benefits

The long-term benefits of ceramics include reliable part performance, which often triples that of other materials, making ceramic materials a more cost-effective choice in many applications.

In addition, ceramic-made parts offer a high melting point, oxidation resistance, high hardness and light weight. They are also a bit chameleon-like; many of the desirable properties of various metals, polymers and rubbers can be displayed in ceramic materials. For example, ceramics are often as corrosion resistant as stainless steel; some varieties can be harder than titanium; some can be injection-molded or cast like polymers and rubbers, and many are lightweight like aluminum or polymers.

Advanced ceramics are able to outperform metals in many situations, especially in harsh environments, and are also sometimes able to conduct electricity better than copper. There are a wide variety of products that are made possible solely by ceramics, such as space shuttles and missile cones, which would crack without heat-insulating ceramic casings.

Another advantage of ceramics is the fact that they can be used in environmental applications to absorb toxic materials and decrease pollution or to help with water purification.

Things to Consider

Ceramic products are varied and complex, and it takes a good industry guide and manufacturer to get high quality solutions upon which you can rely. More than a good contract manufacturer, though, you want the right manufacturer, one who can match all your specifications, work within your timeframe and budget, and who wants to work hard for you. The best way to find this manufacturer is by browsing the list of suppliers we have listed near the top of this page. Check out their websites, then reach out to one or more of them for a quote.




  • Alumina ceramic, or aluminum oxide, is an extremely durable and cost effective option used in many industrial and commercial applications.
  • Ceramic armor is an extremely hard nonmetal body having good fracture toughness, extreme wear and corrosion resistance and a high capacity to absorb ballistic impacts.
  • Ceramic balls are rolling spherical elements made of inorganic, nonmetallic materials that are used applications involving rotary or linear motion in addition to a number of other functions.
  • Ceramic bearings are smooth, lightweight and high tolerance, leading to an increased maximum rotational speed.
  • Ceramic bushings are extremely reliable and hardy, and are often made from alumina ceramics or Steatite.
  • Ceramic coatings are, although expensive, able to give coated objects a life of up to 10 times longer.
  • Ceramic composites are raw ceramics mixed with other materials to achieve desired properties. Ceramic composites can be significantly stronger and more resistant to damage.
  • Ceramic grinding is a design and manufacturing process whereby an abrasive is used for material removal, dimensioning and finishing of ceramic components and products.
  • Ceramic insulators are used for a wide variety of applications, because of very good electrical conductivity.
  • Ceramic machining involves the design and manufacture of ceramic precision components.
  • Ceramic manufacturers are companies that make ceramic materials.
  • Ceramic rods are solid, cylindrical ceramic products.
  • Ceramic spacers provide equal and constant spacing between materials or objects.
  • Ceramic tubes are hollow, cylindrical ceramic products, often available with single or multiple bores.
  • Ceramic washers are used for their high abrasion, temperature and corrosion resistance.
  • Industrial ceramics involve the use of non-metallic, inorganic, mineral compounds in the production of large, in size or quantity, ceramics to be used in a wide range of contexts due to their desirable high resistance and insulating qualities.
  • Silicon carbide, or carborundum, is an extremely hard ceramic composed of carbon and silicon atoms bonded in a crystal lattice.


Ceramics Properties


General Characteristics of Structural Materials
Characteristic Ceramics Metals Polymers
Density  Low to High  Low to High  Low 
Hardness  High  Medium  Low 
Tensile Strength Low to Medium  High  Low 
Compressive Strength High  Medium to High  Low to Medium 
Young’s Modulus Medium to High  Low to High  Low 
Melting Point  High  Low to High  Low 
Dimensional Stability High  Low to Medium  Low 
Thermal Expansion  Low to Medium  Medium to High  High 
Thermal Conductivity  Medium  Medium to High  Low 
Thermal Shock  Low  Medium to High  High 
Electrical Resistance  High  Low  High 
Chemical Resistance  High  Low to Medium  Medium 
Oxidation Resistance  Medium to High  Low  Low 
Machinability  Medium  Low  Medium 



Ceramic Manufacturing Terms

Adsorption – The act of one material adhering to another. In the case of clay and water, water is held on the surface of clay by a loose bonding force.

Amorphous – A property meaning that something does not have a regular structure. Glass is an example of an amorphous material, as a result of its being cooled too rapidly to form a crystalline structure.

Attribute
– A characteristic of an object.

Bisque – Unglazed, fired clay.

Bloating – A distortion caused by moving gases when the firing process occurs too rapidly.

Blunging – A term for the mechanical mixing of clay slurry.

Ceramic Change – The point at which, during firing, the clay becomes ceramic.

Coefficient of Thermal Expansion – The measurement of the length change of ceramic materials under temperature change. Ceramics expand while heating and contract while cooling.

Deflocculation – The process of changing a thick clay slurry into a thinner, pourable substance by adding small amounts of liquid or powder to the mixture.

Devitrification – The crystallizing of a ceramic melt during cooling, which results in a “matte” finish.

Dunting – The cracking that results from a fired object being cooled too quickly.

Eutetic – The lowest temperature at which two materials will melt together.

Firing – The act of maturing the clay by heating inside a kiln.

Flocculation – A process that thickens liquid slurry into a gel in order to avoid drips and improve suspension.

Flux – A material that is added to a mix in order to lower the melting temperature of the whole.

Glaze – The liquid covering that is applied to bisque or greenware, which produces a hard, glassy surface.

Greenware – Clay objects that have not yet been fired.

Kiln – A high temperature furnace or oven, which is used to fire ceramics.

Maturity – The point at which ceramics have had the correct amount of firing.

Mold – A permanent form that is used to press clay into a shape in preparation for firing.

Porosity
– A term for the amount of pores, or empty spaces, within a material.

Refractory – A material’s ability to endure heat without deforming.

Sintering – Heating clay to the point at which it will no longer break down when exposed to water.

Thermal Shock – The volume change in a material that results from a sudden shift in temperature.

Vitrification – The point during firing at which clay particles will turn into glassy melts, forming glass.




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