St. Louis Section | The American Ceramic Society

St. Louis Section

The St. Louis Section of The American Ceramic Society was founded in 1965.





Chair:  Chris Perry, Christy Refractories  314-773-7500

Vice Chair: Zach Hall, AluChem of Little Rock, 501-486-9106

Treasurer: Patty Smith, Missouri S & T, 573-341-6265

Secretary: Ed Reeves, 314-369-1833

Counselor: Kent Weisenstein, 636-479-7770


Meetings and Events

St. Louis Section/Refractory Ceramics Division 55th Annual Symposium of Refractories: March 26 - 28, 2019

The St. Louis Section and the Refractory Ceramics Division of The American Ceramic Society will sponsor the 55th Annual Symposium on Refractories on the theme “Shaped Refractories” on March 27-28, 2019 and a kickoff event at the Westport Social will held the evening of March 26, 2019. The meeting will be held in St. Louis, Missouri, at the Hilton St. Louis Airport Hotel; click here  to view the event program. Co-program chairs are Beau Billet of Edward Orton Jr. Ceramic Foundation and Dawn Hill of Xertech Specialties/Artech.  Click here to register.    

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 a two-hour open 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.eduClick here to register.

Please note that a meeting of the ASTM International C-8 Committee on Refractories will be held on March 26, before this joint St. Louis Section/RCD conference. Contact Molly Lynyak at 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 25-29, 2019 at the Hilton (314) 426-5500. The rate is $113.00 for a single or double. To receive the $113 rate, mention the Group Name: St. Louis Section of The American Ceramic Society or Group Code: ACS when making your reservation. The web address to make online reservations is:,WW,HILTONLINK,EN,DirectLink&fromId=HILTONLINKDIRECT

All hotel reservations must be received on or before March 7, 2019.

For further information, please contact Patty Smith at: 573-341-6265, fax: 573-341-2071 or email:

A sampling of the presentations scheduled for the event include:

“Phase Changes in Aluminum Phosphates Caused by Refractory Fabrication and Service”
James Bennett1, Anna Nakano1,2, Jinichiro Nakano1,2, and Jack Widmer1,3
1National Energy Technology Laboratory – USDOE; 2AECOM; 3ORISE

“An Overview of Ceramic Forming Processes”
William M. Carty, New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University

“Processing of Magnesia Ceramic Shapes via Slip Casting”
Keith DeCarlo1, and William M. Carty2
1Blasch Precision Ceramics; 2Alfred University

“Engineering Resilience with Precast Refractory”
Dana Goski and Matthew Lambert, Allied Mineral Products, Inc

“Regional Influences in Aluminosilicate Refractory Raw Material Selection”
Scot Graddick, Chris Parr, and Phil Edwards, Imerys Aluminates

“Ideal Casting Procedures for Optimal Precast Shape Properties”
William L. Headrick Jr. PhD. 1, Dale Zacherl2, and Andreas Buhr3
1Missouri Refractories Company, Inc. (MORCO); 2Almatis, Inc.; 3Almatis GmbH, Germany

“A Study of Controlled Drying of Refractory Castable Shapes”
James G. Hemrick and John L. Waters, Reno Refractories, Inc.

“Thermomechanical Behavior and Slag Corrosion Mechanism of Spinel-Periclase-Zirconia Refractories for Ruhrstahl Heraeus Degasser”
Somnath Mandal, University of California

“New Advances in the Laboratory Characterization of Refractories: Testing, Modelling and Industrial Applications” Invited Paper – 2018 Alfred W. Allen Award Winner
Jacques Poirier, Polytech’Orleans

“Thermally Induced Distinct Materials Behavior of Andalusite Bricks”
Hartmut Koerber, Yannick Hemberger, and Peter Quirmbach
Deutsches Institut fuer Feuerfest und Keramik GmbH (DIFK)

“Non-destructive Testing to Determine Internal Defects in Shaped Refractories”
Thomas R. Viverito, Morgan Advanced Materials

“The History of Refractory Bricks in Missouri”
Shannon Jaeger, Kelley Wilkerson, and Jeffrey Smith
Missouri University of Science and Technology

“Comparison of Cement- and Hydratable Alumina-Bonded Alumina-Spinel Materials for Steel Ladle Purging Plugs”
Dale Zacherl, Almatis, Inc.


St. Louis Section Holds Fall Meeting

The St. Louis Section of The American Ceramic Society held its fall meeting on Friday, November 2, 2018, at Matt's Steakhouse in Rolla, MO.

The meeting began with a tour of Mo-Sci Corporation, a world leader in high-quality precision glass technology. Following networking and dinner, the featured speaker was Dr. Kathy Flores, Director of the Institute of Materials Science and Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis.



St. Louis Section/RCD 54th Annual Symposium of Refractories:  March 20 - 22, 2018

The St. Louis Section and the Refractory Ceramics Division of The American Ceramic Society sponsored the 54th Annual Symposium on Refractories on the theme “Refractories for the Cement, Glass, and Minerals Manufacturing Industry” on March 21-22, 2018. View full program here. The meeting took place in St. Louis, Missouri, at the Hilton St. Louis Airport Hotel. Co-program chairs were Andrew Domann of Bucher Emhart Glass and Steven Ashlock of Kyanite Mining Corporation.



All ACerS Meetings


The Theodore J. Planje - St. Louis Refractories Award Winners

2017 Winner: Andreas Buhr, Almatis GmbH

2016 Winner: Bjørn Myhre, Elkem Silicon Materials

2015 Winner: Victor C. Pandolfelli, Federal University of São Carlos, Brazil

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

2013 Winner: J.P. Willi, Sunset Refractory 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

Nomination deadline for 2018 Award: December 1, 2017

In December 1967, the St. Louis Section of The American Ceramic Society announced the establishment of  "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, 2017 will be held for the following year. To request a nomination form, please contact Patty Smith at P: (573) 341-6265, F: (573) 341-6151.


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