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Pyroceram is the original glass-ceramic material developed and trademarked by Corning Glass in the 1950s.[1]


Its development has been traced to Corning's work in developing photosensitive glass.[2] Corning credits S. Donald Stookey with its discovery; while conducting research in 1953 on a photosensitive lithium silicate glass called Fotoform containing a dispersion of silver nanoparticles, Stookey noted that an accidentally overheated fragment of the glass resisted breakage when dropped.[3] Stookey's initial glass-ceramic became Fotoceram, with Li2Si2O5 and quartz as its crystalline phases. Fotoceram evolved into Pyroceram in 1959, with β-spodumene as the crystalline phase, which evolved into the CorningWare line of cookware.[4]

The manufacture of the material involves controlled crystallization.[2] NASA classifies it as a glass-ceramic product.[5]

After about 30 years of informal use as a standard in high heat (≥1000°C) applications, Pyroceram 9606 was approved by NIST as a certified reference material for thermal conductivity measurements.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ M. Montazerian, S.P. Singh & E.D. Zanotto, "An Analysis of Glass-Ceramic Research and Commercialization," American Ceramic Society Bulletin, Vol. 94, #4, p 30-35 (2015).
  2. ^ a b "New Scientist Dec 29, 1960". New Scientist. 1960: 1708. ISSN 0262-4079. 
  3. ^ "The History of Corning Innovation". Corning Glass. 1952 section. Retrieved 2016-01-19. 
  4. ^ W.W. Shaver & S.D. Stookey, "Pyroceram," SAE Technical Papers, 90428, 1959.
  5. ^ "Results of Mechanical Testing for Pyroceram Glass-Ceramic" (PDF). NASA. Retrieved 2010-06-11. 

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