Potential Use of Oyster Shells in Ceramic Production

This study focused on the possibility of replacing silica in ceramic production with oyster shells. Powdered oyster shells were used instead of silica in the production of ceramics. The texture, color and durability of the ceramics were compared to those made with silica. Six kilograms of Vigan clay and 2.5 kg of ball clay were mixed and soaked in water overnight. The following day, the mixture was kneaded again and filtered. The mixture was placed over Plaster of Paris for the water to be absorbed.

The solidified mixture was then rolled and compressed to let the air escape from the spaces inside the solidified mixture. After this, the mixture was molded, air dried for four days and fired in a furnace. Three trials were made at different temperatures – 900 degrees Celcius, 950 degrees Celcius and 1000 degrees Celcius. The finished products were compared in terms of texture and color to those made using silica. Ten evaluators from the staff of the University of Northern Philippines – Ceramics Research, Training and Development Center rated set-ups in a scale of 1-10 with 1 being the lowest rating and 10 the highest. It was found that the texture of the experimental set-up is better than the control set-up. It was also found that the color of the experimental set-up is comparable to the control set-up. Tests on durability of the ceramics, which were done at SLU College of Engineering Laboratory, revealed that the experimental set-up is more durable than the control set-up. This proves that oyster shell can be utilized in the production of ceramics. It also affirms that ceramics made using oyster shells are better than those produced using silica in terms of texture and durability.

Materials & Equipment

Further clarification of the procedures and results should be directed to the researchers and adviser.

Researchers:
Frances Monina M. Obrero

Adviser:
Eloisa B. Aquino
Ilocos Sur National High School