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25 novembre 2010 | Veille marchés et technologie

Ceramic material with interconnected porosity

Technology Request

A Swiss applied science research institute is looking for alumina, alumino-silicate or clay foams panels with interconnected porosity. Minimum dimensions are : 60 x 60 x 2.5 cm, with pore size of 1 to 3 mm. The partner should be a manufacturer or a technical centre able to deliver small series of ceramic foams with customized properties. Sub-contracting agreement is foreseen.

Description :

A Swiss research institute, associated with a company for an applied research project, is looking for ceramic foam for application in building sector. The ceramic foam has to present interconnected porosity, obtained by polymer foam impregnation with a slurry. The polymer foam is burnt before sintering. Ceramic can be alumina, alumino-silicate or clay based material. Use of clay as raw material (for example, enameled stoneware instead of alumina 90%) will allow the decrease of the sintering temperature.

Small series will have to be delivered at different stages of the project. The manufactured ceramic foam panel prototypes will be tested in the application by the Swiss research institute (and/or company). As a result, the specifications will evolve to optimize the panels from one serie to another.

Coloration of the ceramic foam by enamelling or by bulk pigmentation would be interesting as well.

The possibility of scale-up to production by the partner is a plus.

In the future, there will be an interest for ecological production. This means the use of ecological foam for impregnation. The aim is to decrease toxic emission during polymer foam burning, by the use of corn starch foam for example.

Technical Specifications / Specific technical requirements of the request

Alumina or alumina-silicate ceramic foam with the following specifications :

* interconnected porosity : water can go through the foam in all directions.
* porosity dimension : 1 to 3 mm diameter, PPI 10 ou 20.
* sheet dimension : about 60*60 cm to 100*100 cm, thickness : 2,5 to 3,5 cm.
* density : if possible, under 1 (measured on 2.5 cm-thickness-sample).
* the surface should not crumble.
* porosity has to be generated by polymer foam impregnation to obtain a regular (homogeneous) porosity.
* possibility to colour ceramic by enameling or by bulk pigmentation.
* chemical stability.
* freeze-resistant.

Current and Potential Domain of Application Building sector.


* Type of partner sought : industry or development centre.

* Specific area of activity of the partner : manufacturer or developer of ceramic materials

* Task to be performed : prepare small series of ceramic foams with customized properties at different deadlines within a period of 2 years. Adapt the composition and the properties in function of the tests. The ability to produce ceramic foams at large scale is a plus.

  • Contact Details Organisation Oseo Innovation (PIC-SOF) Mrs Fabienne Mazeau

Phone +33 5 55 33 08 20

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