There are many fields that have prospered due to the advances in ceramics over the last century. The medical field has been able to exchange steel for ceramics in joint replacement. The use of ceramics allows for a replacement joint with a longer wear life and fewer issues for the patient. This is just one of the many ways ceramics impact lives in the modern world. Heart valves, pacemakers and bone substitutes are just a few more medical applications of ceramics. Many diagnostic machines in the medical field use transducers made of ceramics as well.
Glass is an important part of the ceramics family of materials. It is used widely today for a variety of applications. The aerospace industry may boast about shuttle tiles, but glass windshields in airplanes use the ceramic properties of glass for windows that do not ice up in cold weather. Another application of ceramics in the aerospace industry is jet engines that have ceramic composites to enable them to work more efficiently. Electronics are enhanced through the use of ceramics as well. Best of all, each of these parts are labeled with glass decals or glass transfers for easy identification and replacement when necessary.
Ceramics are hidden throughout modern society. Smart phones, tablets and televisions all have capacitors that are possible with advanced ceramics. Kitchen appliances take advantage of the properties of ceramics as well. From glass insulation to heating filaments in the toaster, there are ceramics all over the modern kitchen. They coat the outside of the refrigerator, are present in flat cook tops that are easy to clean and are used in the electrical component of small appliances.
The field of ceramics is ever expanding. Its durability and unusual properties when made from different substances are still being explored today. Predictions of high temperature superconductors, miniaturization of electrical components and more medical applications have been made. This field will continue to expand greatly in the future.