Design, Algorithm and Devices, together they have enabled us to automate equipment, analyze big data, took us to the Galaxies far away and have brought the world into our palms. But behind every technology lie matieals with their unique properties that have enabled the world of possibilities.

Welcome to Material Science

Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.

- Francis of Assisi

CeramicWorks Laboratory

As fireworks are the manifestation of joy and celebration, at CeramicWorks Laboratory we aspire to create technological wonders with ceramics which will transcend us to a world of new possibilities.
Now the question arises, Why ceramics? Ceramics are defined as solid inorganic compounds of metals and non-metals which are held together by ionic and covalent bonds. In simpler words, everything that is non-metal or polymer can be called ceramics. And that’s where its strength lies: they are everywhere, in the porcelain bowls, as armors, ballistics, space shuttles, electronics, lasers, sensors, energy harvesters, solar-cells, batteries, vehicles, furnaces, bio-ceramics, insulators, conductors, jewelries… you name it!

Figure 1. Ceramics in technology (not an exhaustive list, just a representation), from Google images.

One of my teachers once described ceramics as "Ceramics are the materials of future and they will remain so forever." The reason being the permutations and combinations of possibility for coming up with new ceramic compounds is beyond imaginations and so are their applications. But, let us not limit ourselves to ceramics only; let's use all the materials ceramics, metals, polymers, composites, metamaterials, all of them realize a world of new material, new technologies, new possibilities.


Ceramics exhibit wide range of properties (figure 1), as they can form varities of crystal structures with ionic and covalent bonds. Ceramics have been predominantly manufactured by sintering, wherein the compacted powder of ceramics are heated at high temperature and solid-state diffusion along the grain boundaries leads to densification. Applying external fields (such as pressure, electric field, electromagnetic fields, and lasers) during sintering can lower down these high temperature requirements, and can also be used to control their microstructure (density, grain-size or texture) and phases to produce high quality crystalline/amorphous materials. The local temperature measurements show that fields interact with matter non-thermally and changes the energy states of high temperature phases to stabilize them at lower temperatures.

Figure 2. The effect of pressure and electric field on the processing temperatures of 3mol% yttria stabilized zirconia, an important representative example of ceramics.

We study the change in thermodynamic parameters under fields to synthesize/sinter ceramics with tailored properties. With the engineered properties these materials could be used in ceramic protective coatings, high precision sensors and actuators, bio-ceramics in the form of functionally graded materials, efficient photovoltaic diodes and photocatalysts with tuned band-gaps, higher ionic conductivity electrolytes for batteries and multiferroic complex materials for electronic circuit elements.


Please visit Google Scholar for complete up-to-date list of our publications.


P.I.:   Shikhar Krishn Jha
Western Lab, 303-D
IIT Kanpur,

Inter-disciplinary research and collaborative effort holds prime importance in pushing the technological front forward. I have been fortunate to have worked on many different research topics, including Field enhance sintering, metal-ceramic-polymer composites, Additive manufacturing, and Machine learning.

At IIT Kanpur, I want to pursue fundamental research in developing advanced material-processing techniques for energy harvesting, coatings and interfaces, functional materials, sensor-and-actuators, and electronic applications.

It is not the intelligence but the perseverance to find the answers that makes all the difference. If you that person, I invite you to visit me at Western Lab, 303-D, drop me a call (0512-259-2094) or write me an email to discuss about the projects, ideas and opportunities at our lab.

Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard.

- Tim Notke

Students and staffs

Raushan Kumar

Research interests: Metal-ceramic composites and interfaces
Personal interests: Football, music, Teaching kids, programming in Python

Soumitra Preekh

Research interests: Advance ceramics, processing
Personal interests: Cricket, badminton, Cooking, Teaching

Parmanand Tyagi

Research interests: Sintering, Diffusion, Additive manufacturing
Personal interests: Cricket, Football, Space science documentary

Ajay Pratap Singh

Research interests: Iron & Steel Making, Physical Metallurgy.
Specialization: Physical and Mechanical metallurgy: Processing and characterization of materials


Research Opportunities

Research Projects for Ph.D., M. Tech and B. Tech

  1. Machine learning assisted correlation between microstructure and the properties of Inconel for development of new processes, with Prof. Shashank Shekhar. MSE, IITK
  2. Development of solid-state electrolyte for new generation of Li-ion batteries, with Prof. Shobit Omar. MSE, IITK
  3. Additive manufacturing of polymer-ceramic composites, with Prof. J. Ramkumar. Mechanical Engineeeing, IITK
  4. Dynamic fracture shields for armor application. Ph.D. project in collaboration with DORD
  5. Thermal barrier coatings on aircraft nozzle: Two projects - (a) Experimental (b) FEM simulation for structural analysis
  6. Metal-ceramic composite for impact protection and wear resistance
  7. Nano-sensors development with funcationally tuned metamaterials

  8. B. Tech speacial

  9. Design of Tesla Oscillator, Reference: Patent, Wikipedia
  10. Machine Learning (ML) of microstructural morphology
  11. Arduino based system control and automation (Python)
  12. Machine learning and data analysis for peak fitting and intellegent prediction (Python)