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September 4th, 2013

Refractory Ceramics Division

Get Involved in the Refractory Ceramics Division


Refractory Ceramics Division logo

The Refractory Ceramics Division of The American Ceramic Society examines the science, production and application of ceramics for use at elevated temperatures and in other hostile environments. Members are involved in materials development, formulation, production, and engineering of refractories for the iron, steel, aluminum, and other nonferrous metal industries as well as the minerals processing, glass, cement, and petrochemical industries.


Refractory products are nonmetallic materials that withstand severe high temperature service conditions. They must resist chemical attack; withstand molten metal and slag erosion; endure thermal shock, physical impact, catalytic heat; and other rigorous conditions. Generally, refractory products are needed in processes where temperatures exceed 700°F. Some applications call for service temperatures of 3500°F or higher.


Refractory products are, in many cases, the only materials that can contain or control high temperature processes, making them critical to the United States industrial base. Refractories line the furnaces and smelters that refine steel, copper, aluminum, and other metals. They are used in cement kilns and glass furnaces, as well as in petroleum cracking and processing. Power generators, boilers, and other combustion equipment all use refractories.


Refractories have been used by humankind since earliest recorded history. When humans first began to smelt metals and shape primitive knives, hunting weapons, and ornamental rings and jewelry, crude refractory materials were developed to facilitate the pyroprocessing of the ores. As refractory practice developed, materials evolved which were ever more durable, lasting longer and longer before replacement was necessary.


Ben Markel

Resco Products
3514 W. Wendover Ave.
Greensboro, NC 27407

Phone: (336) 299-1441


Jens Decker

Director of Technical Services

Stellar Materials

916 Raymond Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48103


Phone: (561)504-4305



Josh Pelletier

Technical Development Engineer

Kerneos, Inc. 


Phone: (757)284-3254



Rules & Minutes  

Refractory Ceramics Division Rules


The ACerS St. Louis Section and the Refractory Ceramics Division had a great joint meeting in St. Louis, March 26-27, 2014.  Read a recap and see from photos from the meeting here

Mark your calendars!

St. Louis Section/Refractory Ceramics Division 51st Annual Symposium: March 24-26, 2015

The St. Louis Section and the Refractory Ceramics Division of The American Ceramic Society will sponsor the 51st Annual Symposium on the theme “Refractories as Engineered Ceramics” on March 25-26, 2015. A kickoff event (TBD) will held the evening of March 24, 2015. The meeting will be held in St. Louis, Missouri, at the Hilton St. Louis Airport Hotel. Co-program chairs are Mike Alexander of Riverside Refractories and Matt Lambert of Allied Mineral Products.


Click here to view the full program.  View kickoff event here


Register now!


The Tabletop Expo format is the same as previous years, with each vendor having a 6-foot table to display products and literature. The charge is $300, which will be used to cover the cost of the Expo Hall and provide an open two hour bar during the “Meet and Greet” for the attendees prior to the dinner buffet on Wednesday evening. If you are interested in participating in the Tabletop Expo, contact Patty Smith at (573) 341-6265 or psmith@mst.edu or complete the tabletop reservation form.


Please note that a meeting of the ASTM International C-8 Committee on Refractories will be held on March 24th, before this joint St. Louis Section/RCD conference. Contact Kate McClung at (610) 832-9717 for more information on this meeting.


The pre-registration fee of $225.00 or on-site registration fee of $275.00 ($125.00 for Emeritus/Seniors and $50.00 for students) includes the cost of your bound copy of the Symposium Technical Papers, Continental Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Coffee Breaks.


A block of rooms has been set aside for the evenings of March 23-27, 2015 at the Hilton (314) 426-5500. The rate is $104.00 for a single or double. To receive the $104 rate mention the Group Name: St. Louis Section of The American Ceramic Society or Group Code: SAC when making your reservation. Make your online hotel reservation no later than March 2, 2015.  


For further information please contact Patty Smith at tel: (573) 341-6265, Fax: (573) 341-2071 or email: psmith@mst.edu.

Expo Vendors

Almatis Kercher Industries
AluChem Kerneos, Inc.
Alteo-Alumina Kyanite Mining Corp.
American Ceramic Society LAEIS GmbH
BassTech International Orton Ceramic Foundation             
Calucem, Inc. Possehl Erzkontor N.A.
China Mineral Procurement, LLC PQ Corporation
Christy Minerals RED Industrial Products
Cilas Particle Size Refractory Minerals
DIFK GmbH, Germany TAM Ceramics
Elkem Silicon Materials Waschington Mills
Great Lake Minerals ZIRCAR Ceramics, Inc.
IMERYS Refractory Minerals                   


April 28 – 30, 2015

Ceramics Expo

Cleveland, Ohio USA


September 15 – 18, 2015
Unified International Technical Conference on Refractories (UNITECR 2015)
Vienna, Austria


October 4 – 8, 2015

Materials Science & Technology 2015, combined with ACerS 117th Annual Meeting (MS&T15)
Greater Columbus Convention Center
Columbus, Ohio USA


November 2 – 5, 2015

76th Conference on Glass Problems (76th GPC)

Greater Columbus Convention Center
Columbus, Ohio USA


All ACerS Meetings


Alfred W. Allen Award

This biennial award was established to honor Alfred W. Allen’s legacy as an educator, technical contributor and supporter of the Refractory Ceramics Division. The award committee shall select as the biennial award recipient, from the technical literature of the last two years, the author(s) of the technical paper on refractory ceramics which reflects the highest level of technical quality.


Allen Award Recipients


The Theodore J. Planje — St. Louis Refractories Award Winners: 

2014 Winner: Jeffrey D. Smith, Missouri University of Science and Technology


2013 Winner:  J.P. Willi, Sunset Regractory Services, LLC  


2012 Winner:  Rick Volk, UNI-REF, Inc.


2011 Winner:  Rob Crolius – The Refractories Institute


2010 Winner: James L. Hill, Retired – ANH Refractories


2009 Winner: James W. Stendera, Vesuvius USA


In December 1967, the St. Louis Section of The American Ceramic Society announced the establishment of as “The St. Louis Refractories Award.” This has been provided in Article XII of the by-laws of the St. Louis Section “for the purpose of recognizing and honoring distinguished achievement in the refractories field.”


In March 1982, the St. Louis Section voted to amend Article XII of the by-laws. The award was renamed “The Theodore J. Planje — St. Louis Refractories Award” in honor of his many contributions.


Nominations received after December 1 shall be held for the following year. To request a nomination form please contact Patty Smith at P: (573) 341-6265, F: (573) 341-6151.



The Refractories Institute (TRI) will once again award a limited number of scholarships based on academic merit and the applicant’s demonstrated experience and interest in the field of refractories. The scholarships will be awarded in the form of one time grants of $5,000 each and are available to college undergraduate or graduate students studying in North America who will be enrolled full time for the 2015-16 academic year in pursuit of an undergraduate or advanced degree in ceramic engineering, materials science or similar discipline. Deadline for applications is March 13, 2015. Find out more today.


Refractories Applications and News – a bimonthly publication, RAN, covers the latest advances in raw materials, finished products, installation and research.


The Refractories Institute – Promoting the interests of the refractories community, providing service and support to a vital industry.


refractories WORLDFORUM is the new technical and scientific journal for the entire refractories sector: production, application and further development of high temperature materials.  It addresses refractories professionals worldwide, i.e. in the production of refractories as well as in industries processing and consuming refractories, raw materials and additives, plant and machine suppliers.  refractories WORLDFORUM is published four times per year in English.

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