Process of pyroplastic shaping for special-purpose porcelain stoneware tiles

Autores: Raimondo, M.|Zanelli, C.|Guarini, G.|Dondi, M.|Fabbroni, R.|Cortesi, T.
Fuente: Ceram. Int.
35 (5), 1975-1984

A novel technique to manufacture special-purpose tiles (i.e. trim pieces, steps, skirting boards, etc.) has been recently developed on the basis of a pyroplastic shaping of porcelain stoneware tiles. This innovative process involves a second firing, peaking at temperatures close to those of sintering, whose effect was investigated by comparing industrially manufactured tiles before and after pyroplastic shaping. Characterization by XRF, XRPD, SEM and standard testing (ISO 10545) put in evidence that pyroplastic bending induced little changes in the water absorption and bulk density values, as in phase composition. Limited variations occurring to closed porosity, mechanical strength and microstructure do not significantly affect the overall technological performance of the special-purpose tiles, which is substantially the same of the original porcelain stoneware tiles. A detailed microstructural characterization was performed for the first time on porcelain stoneware tiles: coarse grains (> 10 mu m) represent 10-15% of total volume, while fine-grained crystals, dispersed in the glassy phase, amount from 30% to 65% of the viscous matrix. The pyroplastic behaviour was found to depend in a complex way on such microstructural and compositional features, which deeply affect the effective viscosity of the matrix.

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