Refractory inorganic polymers can be made at ambient temperatures and pressures from a powder and a liquid to form a paste of low viscosity. These materials, called geopolymers, include alkali metakaolin-based, aluminosilicates, silico-aluminate phosphates, or stoichiometric “geopolymers” (which convert to single phase ceramics upon heating), as well as other chemically bonded, inorganic compounds. The use of biological materials as starting compounds or as reinforcements in composites demonstrates the eco-friendly and sustainable nature of these materials. The geopolymer “glue” is refractory up to 1,000°C, whereupon it converts to a ceramic or a ceramic plus glass.

Novel potential applications of such composites include fire and corrosion resistant coatings, thermal insulation, porous materials, structural ceramic composites containing ceramic, metal, organic or biological reinforcements, nanozeolites for liquid and water purification, and infrastructure and construction materials. The nanoparticulate nature of geopolymers also provides a low energy, processing route to ultra-refractory ceramic powders or versatile forming methods, including 4D printing.

Proposed Session Topics

  • Synthesis, processing microstructure
  • Mechanical properties, thermal shock resistance
  • Composites
  • Acid-based phosphate geopolymers
  • Other inorganic geopolymer analogues
  • Geopolymer derived processing routes
  • Conversion to ceramics
  • Use of waste materials to make geopolymers
  • Coatings (fire resistant, acid resistant)
  • Waste encapsulation
  • Sustainable materials
  • Novel applications


  • Waltraud M. Kriven, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA,
  • Joseph Davidovits, Geopolymer Institute, St. Quentin, France
  • Ghassan Al Chaar, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, ERDC, CERL, USA
  • Don Seo, Arizona State University, USA
  • Henry A. Colorado, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellin, Colombia