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Chemistry International
Vol. 23, No.5
September 2001


New Publications from the National Institute of Standards and Technology

Guide to Rheological Nomenclature: Measurements in Ceramic Particulate Systems

Vincent A. Hackley* and Chiara F. Ferraris. NIST Special Publication 946, U.S. Department of Commerce, Technology Administration, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 31 pp., January 2001.

Nomenclature is fundamentally important to the progress of science and technology. Because of the rapidly growing volume of available technical information, and the speed with which this information must now be processed, it is critical to have a uniform terminology in place for describing experimental methods and instrumentation, to facilitate the exchange of material property data, and for sharing technical ideas and concepts. This need is especially true for the ceramics industry because of its breadth and interdisciplinary nature. The present document addresses the issue of nomenclature for one important area of ceramic science: rheology and rheometric measurements.

Ceramic suspensions, gels, and pastes are the starting materials for a wide variety of applications, playing critical roles in the processing of products ranging from white-wares to concrete to paint and pigments to high-tech multi-layer ceramic packages for the advanced electronics industry. Unfortunately, researchers and engineers working in these diverse fields often speak different languages, thus resulting in miscommunication and ambiguity. Even within the same field, variations in terminology are common. The need for widely accepted, uniform, and precise nomenclature was emphasized recently by the Ceramic Processing Characterization Council (CPCC, formerly the Ceramic Processing Characterization Consortium), a voluntary organization of participants representing industry, instrument companies, academia, and government. CPCC members identified nomenclature as a high-priority issue in the areas of dispersion and rheology. In response to this need, we have initiated a series of guides to help in the interpretation of nomenclature and data relating to particle-liquid ceramic systems.

In compiling the present guide, we drew upon a number of sources, including books, review articles, and published terminologies. To the extent possible, an effort was made to maintain a degree of uniformity with existing standards and conventions. To this end, definitions are generally consistent with nomenclatures published by the American Concrete Institute (ACI), the British Standards Institute (BSI), IUPAC, and the Society of Rheology. A complete bibliography of sources is provided.

An international ad hoc committee was formed to review the technical content and language of the nomenclature and to offer input where needed. The committee members represent a broad spectrum of experts from industry, academia, and government, and include (in alphabetical order) Lennart Bergström (YKI), John Dealy (McGill University), Ed Garboczi (NIST), Bob Hunter (University of Sydney), Kamal Khayat (University of Sherbrooke), François de Larrard (Laboratoire Central des Ponts et Chaussées), Makio Naito (JFCC), Celik Ozyildirim (Virginia Transportation Research Council), Ponserril Somasundaran (Columbia University), and Abbas Zaman (University of Florida). Their efforts are gratefully acknowledged.

It is our primary hope that this document will serve as a resource to those working in particle systems applications, particularly in the ceramic sciences. It is our further hope that this document will serve to promote the establishment of a commonly recognized system of terminology throughout the ceramics community.

Vincent A. Hackley and Chiara F. Ferraris
National Institute of Standards and Technology
Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA

*E-mail: [email protected]
Publication available from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402-9325.


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