These pink sea urchins have teeth that sharpen themselves

Sea urchins have five teeth, each held by a separate jaw in a circular arrangement at the center of their spiked, spherical bodies. Now, researchers reporting in the journal Matter on September 18 have discovered how the ...

The secret strength of gnashing teeth

The strength of teeth is told on the scale of millimeters. Porcelain smiles are kind of like ceramics—except that while china plates shatter when smashed against each other, our teeth don't, and it's because they are full ...

Researchers toughen glass using nanoparticles

UCLA mechanical engineers and materials scientists have developed a process that uses nanoparticles to strengthen the atomic structure of glass. The result is a product that's at least five times tougher than any glass currently ...

Ancient proteins offer clues to the past

Archeologists once relied solely on artifacts, such as skeletal remains, fossils and pottery sherds, to learn about past species and cultures. Today's scientists can also study ancient proteins to paint a more complete picture ...

Stop aging in space

Wrinkles, muscle pain, high blood pressure and a clumsy brain are all natural consequences of getting old. As our cells rust over time, a key to fighting chronic disease may be in tiny, smartly designed particles that have ...

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Ceramic

A ceramic is an inorganic, nonmetallic solid prepared by the action of heat and subsequent cooling. Ceramic materials may have a crystalline or partly crystalline structure, or may be amorphous (e.g., a glass). Because most common ceramics are crystalline, the definition of ceramic is often restricted to inorganic crystalline materials, as opposed to the noncrystalline glasses.

The earliest ceramics were pottery[citation needed] objects or 27000 year old figurines made from clay, either by itself or mixed with other materials, hardened in fire. Later ceramics were glazed and fired to create a colored, smooth surface. Ceramics now include domestic, industrial and building products and art objects. In the 20th century, new ceramic materials were developed for use in advanced ceramic engineering; for example, in semiconductors.

The word "ceramic" comes from the Greek word κεραμικός (keramikos), "of pottery" or "for pottery", from κέραμος (keramos), "potter's clay, tile, pottery". The earliest mention on the root "ceram-" is the Mycenaean Greek ke-ra-me-we, "workers of ceramics", written in Linear b syllabic script. "Ceramic" may be used as an adjective describing a material, product or process; or as a singular noun, or, more commonly, as a plural noun, "ceramics".

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