Ceramic heater as a consumer product is a space heater that generates heat using PTC (Positive Temperature Coeffient) ceramic. This type of ceramic material is semi-conductive and has the property that when a voltage is applied to it, the power decreases quickly as it reaches a certain temperature according to the particular composition of the ceramic, and is thus self-regulating. Resistance wire heating elements also have a positive temperature coefficient of restivity, but do not increase their resistance enough to be self-regulating; they are typically used with the wires red-hot. The ceramic, on the other hand, increases its resistance sharply at the Curie temperatures of the crystalline components, typically 120 deg.C, and remains below 200 deg.C, providing a significant safety advantage.
The ceramic elements are in contact with aluminium fins, and a fan blowing across the fins heats the air. Ceramic heaters are usually portable and typically used for heating a room or small office, and are similar to metal-element fan heaters.
- Dakss, Brian (Feb 9, 2005). "A Guide To Space Heaters". CBSNews.com. Retrieved 15 January 2011.
- US patent 4703153