Image icon  Part of a Denby pottery mug, showing the glaze on the surface

 
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Description: On firing, water trapped within the clay evaporates as the temperature rises. Vitrification occurs above about 1000°C, and the clay material fuses into a dense glassy material. Aluminium silicate crystals bond the matrix, increasing the strength, and the object shrinks and becomes more dense. Glaze is then applied, which vitrifies when the object is fired again, and bonds to the surface making it waterproof.
Keywords: ceramic • clay • glaze • pottery • vitrification
Categories: Science approaches > Microstructure
Materials > Ceramics & glasses > Fired clays > Stoneware
Applications > Agriculture/food
Testing, analysis & experimentation > Metallography
Scale > Micro
Created by: DoITPoMS, University of Cambridge
Dr K M Knowles, Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy, University of Cambridge
Published by: DoITPoMS, University of Cambridge
License: This resource is released under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike license (2.0 UK: England & Wales).
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Date created: 09 August 2002
Date added: 21 August 2009
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Resource ID: 1225