Awards & Activities

  • Winner of 2004 Stoel Rives Utah Innovation Award
  • Over $ 2.25 million R & D funding in the form of Small Business Innovation and Research (SBIR) awards (2002 – present)
  • Possible industrial collaboration with several large US manufacturing companies
  • Patented & Trademarked

Micro & Nano Porous Ceramics

Cercanam® Cycling

1800°C Flame Temp

Summary of Cercanam® Properties

  • Ultra-high surface area attainable in a monolithic ceramic part (as high as 100 m2/g)
  • Retains its high surface area after exposure at temperatures as high as 1000°C
  • Chemically stable at temperatures as high as 1500°C in air, H2, CO2, and syngas
  • Excellent thermal cycling and thermal shock resistance (from 800°C to room temp)
  • Offers low cost, one step processing
  • Can achieve near net shapes for complex geometries using wet casting or dry powder pressing, with near zero shrinkage after low-temp firing (200°- 800°C)
  • Excellent for micro-features and micro-channel applications, and high tolerance fabrication
  • Excellent potential for low-temperature (< 150-200°C) curable ceramic coatings and monolithic parts>
  • Moisture resistant and stable in boiling salt water after firing to 800°C
  • For a detailed list of Cercanam® properties, please contact us.

Ceramatec has invented a novel porous refractory ceramic called Cercanam®. Cercanam® is an acronym that stands for Ceramic Castable Nano Material. Cercanam® is trademarked and patented.

Cercanam’s patented formula results in a porous but very strong monolithic structure after firing to temperatures as low as 800C. The material is primarily alumina (>98.5%) and hence very stable at high temperatures in harsh and humid environments. No degradation in strength is seen even at temperatures as high as 1550C. Unlike some other refractory ceramics, the strength of Cercanam® increases with higher temperature.

The material has fine porosity ranging from nano- to micron-sized pores with total pore volume ranging from 20% to 40%. Yet, there is a high level of particle-to-particle contact. This combination gives Cercanam® its high strength relative to its porosity. As a result, Cercanam® has got excellent thermal shock properties.

PROCESS: Cercanam® is prepared in the form of a castable slip which is then poured into a desired mold. After drying and curing, the dried product can be fired to a temperature ranging from 800C to 1500C, depending on the end properties desired: higher firing temperatures lead to higher strength and higher shrinkage with a slight reduction in porosity. At temperatures below 1000C, the material has near zero shrinkage and yet it is strong enough for several applications.

Cercanam® is available in two forms: Regular and High Surface Area (HSA). The Regular Cercanam® (all mention of Cercanam® will mean Regular Cercanam® unless otherwise specified) can be used to cast light-weight monolithic structures with ~30 vol. % porosity (density: 2.5g/cc or 156 pcf). The pores are typically in the 100 nm to 2000 nm range. After firing to 800C, 4-point flexural strengths as high as 50 MPa (7,250 psi) can be achieved for regular Cercanam®.

The surface area of Regular Cercanam® can range from 1 m2/g to 5 m2/g. In contrast, the surface area of HSA-Cercanam® is approximately 100 m2/g. Furthermore, the surface area is stable at temperatures as high as 1000oC. However, unlike the Regular Cercanam®, HSA-Cercanam® has lower mechanical strength.

Chemical purity of Cercanam® depends on the starting purity of alumina and other ingredients which can range from >90% purity to >99.9% purity. For higher purity Cercanam®, higher purity of alumina is used.

For a detailed list of Cercanam® properties, click here.
Cercanam® has got a wide range of applications & markets.


Cercanam® is a platform technology that can be tailored for a very wide range of applications: