ceramitec 2003: A Global Platform for Ceramic Discovery

ceramitec 2003 will provide an international showcase for cutting-edge technology and technological innovations in ceramic production.

Is your company looking for the latest in tile pressing technology? Perhaps you're interested in finding a special raw material blend to improve the performance of a high-tech electronic component. Or maybe you're seeking a way to save energy and increase uniformity in the firing process.

Chances are you'll find these and other innovations at ceramitec 2003, September 16-20 at the New Munich Trade Fair Centre in Munich, Germany. Known as "the world marketplace for ceramics technology," ceramitec 2003 will feature nearly 20 acres of product and technology exhibits, ranging from raw materials, additives and mixing equipment to pressing, glazing, heat treatment and quality control systems. Targeted applications include brick and structural clay, stoneware, refractory ceramics, tile, sanitaryware, china and porcelain, technical ceramics and sintered goods, and powder metallurgy.

More than 700 exhibitors from 40 countries are expected to showcase their products at ceramitec 2003, with around 61% coming from outside Germany. With this much international participation in so many different areas of ceramic manufacturing, it's easy to see why so many people view this show as an important platform for technological discovery.

Among the technologies highlighted by the Sacmi Group at ceramitec 2003 will be Sacmi Forni’s XLNt (Extra Large New tunnel kiln), pictured above, which is designed to be highly versatile, precise, uniform and user-friendly.

A Broad Scope

Exhibits at ceramitec 2003 will focus on all of the major areas of ceramic manufacturing, including raw and auxiliary materials; operating resources; supplies; storage

systems; materials handling equipment; coating/metering equipment; weighing, grinding and batching equipment; classifying/separation technologies; mixing and forming systems; glazing/decorating/

surface treatment equipment; firing and drying technologies; measuring and controlling equipment; analytical/laboratory equipment; plant construction/engineering services; dedusting/filtering equipment; handling/packaging technology/automation; tools, spare parts and wear parts;

environmental protection systems; research, theory and technology transfer; and technical literature.

Raw material suppliers will comprise an entire hall (A1) for their exhibits. Here, on almost three acres of exhibition space, companies will showcase a variety of natural and synthetic materials for products ranging from brick, tile and coffee cups to electrical insulators and high-performance brakes.

Refractories, kilns and related heat treatment equipment will be on display in hall A2, while hall A3 will highlight machinery, plants and equipment for manufacturing brick and heavy clay products.

Attendees whose focus is fine, refractory and technical ceramics will find a host of technologies and equipment dedicated specifically to their fields in halls B1, B2 and B3. This sector, which is the largest of the entire show, will include automated systems and injection molding technologies, as well as equipment for manufacturing ceramic membranes, non-oxide ceramic components and nanoceramics. Hall B1 will also contain equipment and machinery for powder metallurgy.

An International Perspective

The 2003 fair is also expected to reach new heights in terms of international participation. Exhibitors from Germany will comprise a little less than 40 percent of this year's show and will include companies such as Eirich, Lingl and Dorst. Riedhammer GmbH, which is based in Nuremburg, will highlight its new automatic loading and unloading system for sanitaryware and several improved firing technologies at ceramitec 2003.

Although the proportion of exhibitors from Spain and Great Britain was already high in 2000, the figures for 2003 look as if they will be even higher. According to Detlev Gantenberg, managing director of ceramitec 2003, Spanish companies will be putting on a "stronger and more impressive display" in the fine ceramics, heavy clay and raw materials segments. British companies like WBB Group, Surface and PACTA will also have a strong presence at the show, while the British-French company Imerys is expected to take up considerably more exhibition space than in 2000.

The participation from Italian suppliers is expected to match that seen at ceramitec 2000, with companies such as Welko, ICF, Breton, Simec, Ancora, Garoll, Bongioanni and IPA showcasing their products. The Sacmi Group, based in Imola (Bologna), Italy, will also have an impressive display--highlights of the group's exhibit will include the new PH 6200 tile press; the PHR 500 refractory press; Sacmi Forni's XLNt kiln; the ADM 240 casting system by NIV Verona; an isostatic pressing line for the production of large plates, which features a robot-controlled finishing system; and a pressure casting plant for complex-shaped cups.

With over 30 exhibitors, France is sending one of the largest contingents from outside Germany?Ceric alone has reserved an 8600-square-foot stand. Interest in participation from China is also very strong, with Chinese companies expected to take up several times more space than they did in 2000. Among them will be the Keda Group and Ettore Nassetti Asia.

Turkey will also have a stronger representation than in 2000. As of July, eight exhibitors from Turkey had already booked space at the show.

This high-temperature fast firing roller kiln will be one of several new firing technologies highlighted at Riedhammer’s booth during ceramitec 2003.

An Educational Opportunity

In addition to the product and technology exhibits, ceramitec 2003 will also include several educational opportunities. Immediately before ceramitec, the Deutsche Keramische Gesellschaft will host an international congress on silicate ceramics. The congress will take place at the International Congress Centre, adjacent to the New Munich Trade Fair Centre.

During ceramitec, speakers from research and industry in Germany and abroad will present the latest information from the field of metallic powders and ceramics in two workshops. The workshops will cover the subjects of "Modern Sintering Processes" and "Powder Injection Molding," both of which hold a great deal of promise for the future.

Compared to cast or forged products, which subsequently have to be machined, powdered metal (PM) parts can be manufactured in high volumes without mechanical processing. By eliminating various cost-intensive manufacturing steps, PM technology gives rise to parts with tight dimensional tolerances at a considerably lower manufacturing cost than parts produced through other methods. Experience with many components has shown that an average cost savings of 70% can be achieved with powder metallurgical processes compared to machining. High production volumes, near net shape manufacturing and uniform quality increase the economic efficiency of this method. The same technologies offer similar benefits in ceramic manufacturing.

Despite the decline in other technology areas in recent years, powder metallurgy has enjoyed constant growth rates, sometimes in double figures. The global annual production of iron-based powder-metallurgical products currently amounts to more than $6 billion, with the U.S. holding more than 54 percent of that volume. Europe holds approximately 25 percent, with Germany supplying one-quarter of the European market.

Further improvements to properties and cost savings can be expected from new manufacturing processes, such as metal powder injection molding, which have become more and more established in recent years, and from the testing of modern sintering processes, such as microwave sintering. Today, PM injection-molding technology is already used for components in fields ranging from the automotive, chemical, aviation, office machinery, medical technology and computer sectors to jewelry (e.g., watch housings of ceramics or hard metal) and high-volume consumer articles (e.g., small gearwheels in electric toothbrushes). In 2000, parts with a value of over 700 million euros were produced using the powder injection process. A turnover of 1 billion euros is anticipated for 2003, and this figure is expected to double by 2008.

These and other topics will be discussed during the workshops. Additionally, injection-molded PM parts of various materials will be on view at a joint stand of the Deutsche Keramische Gesellschaft (DKG) and the FACHVERBAND Pulvermetallurgie.

Eirich will be among the German companies represented at ceramitec 2003.

A Product Engineering Connection

Taking place simultaneously with ceramitec will be MATERIALICA 2003, the 6th International Trade Fair for Materials Applications, Surface Technology and Product Engineering. This event, which will be held September 16-18 at the New Munich Trade Fair Centre, will provide a central meeting place for product engineers from around the world.

The show will be broken down into six main categories ("worlds") that focus on major materials applications and manufacturing techniques:

o Plastics & Composites World - The exhibits in this category include applications using plastics, textiles and plastics combined with fiber composite materials.

o Ceramics World - This sector focuses on solutions using engineering and functional ceramics, glass, carbon and powder metallurgy.

o Metal World - The highlights in this sector will include lightweight designs made of steel and light metals, such as aluminum, magnesium and titanium. Applications involving the use of iron and other non-ferrous metals will also be on display.

o Surface & Nano World - This sector will focus on classic techniques, such as electroplating, enameling, nitrating and carbonizing, as well as new, economically appealing developments in the sector for microsystem technology and laser-based surface treatment.

o Product Development World - This sector will feature innovative solutions ranging from industrial design to C-techniques, and from tooling methods to virtual and rapid prototyping.

o Testing & Research World - This category is reserved for suppliers of products for measuring and testing techniques, as well as research institutes and service providers.

Approximately 400 exhibitors and more than 7000 visitors are expected to attend this high-tech event.

For more information:

For more information about ceramitec 2003, contact Messe Monchen GmbH, (49) 89-949-11378, fax (49) 89-949-20279, e-mail info@ceramitec.de, or visit http://www.ceramitec.com. For more information about MATERIALICA 2003, contact Robert Metzger at (49) 89-949-20370, fax (49) 89-949-20379, e-mail info@materialica.de, or visit http://www. materialica.de.


Tableware Conference Highlights: New Trends and Technologies

Companies and individuals affiliated with the tableware industry will get a chance to preview new trends and technologies at a conference held on September 15, titled, "Tableware: Trends on the International Market and New Technologies." Organized by SAMA (a subsidiary of Sacmi Whiteware Group) and Riedhammer (an affiliated company), the conference will be held at Paulaner am Nockherberg di Monaco in Munich and is scheduled to run from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m.

During the conference, Ralf Kuhn, board member and engineering manager at Rosenthal AG, will discuss "Innovative Production Technologies for the Tableware Industry." Jerome Fady, vice president of Imerys Tableware Paris Division, will give a speech on "How Raw Materials and Mixes Can Help Tableware Manufacturers," and Roman Lackner, sales manager at Saint-Gobain Industrie Keramik in Rodental, will speak about "New Developments in High-Efficiency Refractory Materials and Their Applications." Karin Scharrer, chief editor of Ceramic Forum International, will chair the discussion. Other participants will include Peter Thipthorp, chief editor of Tableware International, who will discuss "Trends on the International Tableware Market," and Joachim Uebel, general manager of the Ceramics Institute in Meissen, who will discuss "Further Developments in the Production of Fine Porcelain." Eugenio Ferragina, managing director of Sacmi Whiteware, will give the closing speech, titled "Industrial Strategies Aimed at Research and Development and Support of Ceramics-Producing Districts."

For more information about this event, contact Sacmi Whiteware Group, (39) 542-607111, fax (39) 542-642354, sacmi@sacmi.it, http://www.sacmi.com; SAMA Maschinenbau GmbH, (49) 92-53-8890, fax (49) 92-53-1079, e-mail info@sama-online.com, http://www.sama-online.com; or contact Riedhammer GmbH, (49) 91-15-2180, fax (49) 91-15-2182-31, e-mail mail@riedhammer.de, http://www.riedhammer.de.

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