Ceramics Science and Technology

Program Presentation

Since ancient times, ceramics has been a technique that has served mankind to improve their quality of life. Today, we can say that ceramics is involved in three major aspects:

  • The manufacture of ceramic products.
  • The environmental impact of the ceramic industry.
  • Ceramics as a tool for waste recycling.

In this context, the Ceramics Science and Technology Program is ambitious, because it is focused on obtaining ceramic products from every perspective that needs to be known and valued. From the point of view of basic science, the nature of raw materials is looked at, but the technological component always takes precedence.

The program follows the logical sequence of a ceramic production plant. After an introductory section, a series of seven subjects from ceramic technology itself are given. Subsequently, there are two courses that focus on types of ovens, cooking utensils, fuel and saving energy. In addition, two more courses are offered regarding properties, norms, placement and pathology of ceramic materials.

Finally, one last subject is devoted to the role of ceramics in the recycling of waste and the environmental impact of the ceramic industry. The recommended bibliography is included at the end of each course.The purpose of this multidisciplinary course is to present the experiences of a technician who has spent much of his professional life between the factory, research and teaching about ceramics. Therefore, the program is based on a system that places emphasis on the technological element without compromising scientific rigor. To this end, each course is reviewed by a top technical or scientific professional.

Who is the programme for?

The proposed methodology and a clear and diverse curriculum, makes the Ceramic Technology and Science Program designed for people without academic qualifications who wish to receive training in this field, as well as for graduates and professionals that wish to expand job opportunities.

Diploma

Upon successful completion of the program, students will receive a diploma issued by the University where they have enrolled with the sponsorship of the Ibero-american University Foundation (FUNIBER).

Program Structure

The estimated duration of the Ceramic Science and Technology program is 300 hours (30 credits)1.

  • Being a distance program and not subject to classroom attendance, there is no set start date, so students may enroll at any time, provided there are spaces available.
  • For academic reasons the program has a minimum duration of three months.
  • The maximum time available to complete the program is six months. In this time period, the student must have submitted all assignments.
  • The credit structure of the Ceramic Science and Technology program is shown in the following table:
  CREDITSa LENGTHb HOURS
Subjects 30 6 300

a. The number of credits may vary according to the university granting the degree
b. Length in months

Objectives

General Objective:

  • To teach technicians about the various stages of the manufacturing of ceramic products, and how each and every one of them affects manufactured material.

Specific Objectives:

  • To outline a number of properties related to sustainability and the environment, aspects in which ceramics have a great future.
  • To learn about the pre-treatment of clay at the onset of its entrance into the processing plant, along with its mineralogy and evolution throughout the firing process.
  • To describe the shredding techniques according to the type of available raw material and the material produced.
  • To study the plasticity of the ceramic pastes and the forming techniques of the ceramic materials.
  • To analyze the stages of the drying process and the internal and external factors affecting its parameters and, consequently, it’s kinetics.
  • To become familiar with the forms of heat transmission during firing, consequent problems and impact on quality of the ceramic product.
  • To interpret the impact of the quality of fuel /oxidizer mixture in heat treatment and how it reflects in the combustion diagrams.
  • To create a frame of reference in order to know and be able to assess specific consumption needs.
  • To learn about the properties of ceramic materials, from their behavior in acidic or alkaline media to its acoustic properties, including its resistance to temperatures, abrasion or moisture, among others.
  • To describe thermal and acoustic insulation in brick factories.
  • To learn the main techniques for laying materials and other integral elements, and to assess construction pathology.
  • To analyze the main types of glazes (color, texture, applications ...) and their interaction and influence with temperature and time.
  • To assess the environmental impact associated with the life cycle of ceramic materials, from raw material extraction to its elimination as waste.
  • To learn the main ways of using ceramic technology for the waste recovery, whether from ceramic production itself or from its use in other industries.

Career Opportunities

Some of the career opportunities of the Ceramic Science and Technology program are the following:

  • Technicians in charge of of ceramic factories.
  • Quarry operator.
  • Manufacturer of furnaces for firing ceramics.
  • Person in charge of quality and environment in the manufacture of ceramic products.
  • Jobs related to ceramic floor tiles.

Study Plan

The Ceramic Science and Technology Program include a module composed of thirteen subjects, including practical experiences of the author in this field.

The module allows one to know and understand, firstly the theoretical, conceptual and historical foundations involved in ceramic science and, secondly, its organizational, social and technological implementation.

The goal is for students to gain an overview of the ceramics sector, through different related multidisciplinary topics.

The subjects and corresponding hours which make up the module are shown in the following table:

# SUBJECTS HOURS
1 Introduction to ceramics 20
2 Influence of raw materials in the ceramic process 20
3 The nature of clay and its ceramization 20
4 Crushing and particle size distribution 20
5 Shaping ceramic products 20
6 Drying ceramic products 20
7 Cooking ceramic products 30
8 Combustion and Fuels. Types of burners 20
9 Saving measures. Mass and energy balances 30
10 Properties of ceramic materials 20
11 Standardization, positioning and pathology of ceramic materials 30
12 Enamels and ceramic glazes 30
13 Environmental aspects in the manufacture of ceramic materials 20
  TOTAL 300

These subjects, despite being independent, are structured according to a consistent pedagogical order that facilitates their understanding of increasing complexity. Each subject is divided into basic thematic units or chapters; the content includes printed material to be studied to satisfactorily answer the assessment test.

Management

  • Dr. Eduardo García Villena. Doctor in Project Engineering: Environment, Safety, Quality and Communications from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia. Academic Director for the Environment Area at the Ibero-american University Foundation.
  • Dra (c). Lina Pulgarín Osorio. Doctor in Projects from the Ibero-american International University (in process). Master in Comprehensive Management Prevention, Environment and Quality from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia. Academic Coordinator for the Master in Occupational Risk Prevention and associated Specializations.

Teaching staff and Authors

  • Dr. José María Redondo Vega. Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and Geology at the University of Leon.
  • Dr. Cristina Hidalgo González. Doctor in Quality Control. Business Administration from the University of Leon. Associate Professor in the Department of Applied Economics at the University of Leon.
  • Dr. Víctor Jiménez. Doctor in Project Engineering: Environment, Safety, Quality and Communications from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia. Professor at the Ibero-american International University.
  • Dr. Francisco J. Hidalgo Trujillo. Doctor in Project Engineering: Environment, Safety, Quality and Communications from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia. Business advisor and consultant. Strategic process analyst and business development.
  • Dr. Izel Marez. Doctor in Project Engineering: Environment, Safety, Quality and Communication from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia. Professor at the Ibero-american International University.
  • Dr. José Ulises Rodríguez Barboza. Doctor in Project Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, Spain. Professor at the Peruvian University of Applied Sciences. FUNIBER professor.
  • Dr. Olga Capó Iturrieta. Doctor in Project Engineering: Environment, Quality and Prevention. Civil Industrial Engineer Head of Projects at the Institute of Agricultural Research (IAR), Chile.
  • Dr. Mirian Loureiro Fialho. Doctor in Production Engineering from the Federal University of Santa Caterina, Bazil. FUNIBER professor.
  • Dr. (c) Lina Pulgarín Osorio. Doctorate in Projects from the Ibero-american International University (in process). Master in Integrated Management: Prevention, Environment and Quality from the Polytechnic University in Catalonia. Program Coordinator and FUNIBER professor.
  • Dr. (c) Carmen Lilí Rodríguez Velasco. Doctorate in Education from the Ibero-american International University (in process). Master in Occupational and Organizational Psychology from the University of Havana, Cuba. Academic Coordinator of the International Management Development Area, Business Organization and Human Resources and FUNIBER professor.
  • Dr. (c). Diego J. Kurtz. Doctorate in Engineering and Knowledge Management from the PPGEGC – UFSC (in process). Master in International Business – Wiesbaden Business School, Germany. Researcher in the Core Management for Sustainability (www.ngs.ufsc.br) and Junior Researcher of the Dynamic SME Project (www.dynamic-sme.org). Program Coordinator and FUNIBER professor.
  • Dr. (c) Diana Patricia Cortés Díaz. Doctorate in Projects, from the Ibero-american International University (in process). Masters in Human Resources and Knowledge Management from the University of Leon, Spain. Consultant specializing in Labor Law and Social Security. Program Coordinator and FUNIBER professor.
  • María Eugenia Luna Borgaro. Master in Human Resources and Knowledge Management from the University of Leon, Spain. Expert on Human Resource Management and Management Skills. FUNIBER Professor.

FUNIBER Training Scholarships

The Iberoamerican University Foundation (FUNIBER) allocates periodically an extraordinary economic item for FUNIBER Training Scholarships.

To apply, please fill out the information request form that appears in the web of FUNIBER or contact directly the Foundation’s headquarters in your country that will inform you if you need to provide some additional information.

Once the documentation is received, the Evaluation Committee will determine your application's eligibility for the FUNIBER Training Scholarship.