Ceramics and ceramic composites are a rapidly evolving category of materials capable of being tailored to have unique combinations of electrical, optical, mechanical, and chemical properties that make them essential and irreplacable in many engineering applications. Conventional ceramics have both enabled and enhanced many important aspects of our modern technological society; the next generation of ceramics will play a further enabling role for still higher performance devices.
A briefing panel of the National Academies of Science and Engineering recently identified four areas into which promising research areas for advanced ceramics can be grouped:
New thin films and layer structures with improved properties.2.
Exploration of completely new, multicomponent ceramic crystal structures and composites.3.
The mechanical behavior of ceramics and tough composites.4.
Ceramic processing of large parts and assemblies.
Three mechanisms for achieving critical mass in ceramics research were recommended:
A summer institute.3.
A large interdisciplinary center.