Non artistic applications of ceramic
Ceramic is usually hard and strong. However, imperfections in the ceramic make it brittle. Under some conditions, such as extremely low temperature, some ceramics exhibit superconductivity.
It has a property to withstand extreme high heat. The heat sheilds on the belly of the Space Shuttles are made of ceramic tiles.
A couple of decades ago, Toyota researched on producing a ceramic engine which can run at a temperature of over 6000°. Cars with ceramic engine do not require a cooling system and hence a major weight reduction in fuel effecient vehicles. Fuel effeciency of the engine is also higher at high temperature. In conventional metallic engine, much of the energy released from the fuel must be dissipated as waste heat in order to prevent a meltdown of the metallic parts. Despite all the desirable properties, such engines are not in production because the manufacturing of ceramic parts is difficult. Imperfection in the ceramic leads to cracks. Such engines are possible in laboratory research, but manufacturing difficulties prevent them from becoming reliable products. Molecular structure of ceramic