Background and Identification
A ceramic knife is a knife made with a ceramic blade rather than a metal blade. Ceramic knife blades are typically made from zirconium dioxide (ZrO2, also called zirconia).
Ceramic knife blades are often produced through the dry-pressing and firing of powdered zirconia using solid-state sintering. Sintering is the process of compacting and forming a solid mass of some material by heating or pressuring it without melting the material. Ceramic knife blades generally measure 8.5 on the Mohrs scale of mineral hardness. Normal steel blades measure 4.5 on the scale, hardened steel measures 7.5, and diamond measures 10 out of 10 on the hardness scale. Being harder than traditional hardened steel blades, ceramic blades stay sharper for longer. However, ceramic blades are more brittle and are likely to shatter when dropped.
Ceramic knives will not corrode over time, are non-magnetic, and typically do not conduct electricity. Ceramic knives are considered better for slicing boneless meat, vegetables, fruit, and bread because of their resistance to acid and caustic substances. Ceramic knives are not suitable for cutting through bones, frozen foods, or other applications that may result in chipping.
Ceramic knife blades are typically sharpened by grinding the edges with a diamond-dust-coated grinding wheel. Knife blades must be sharpened using a material that measures harder on the mineral hardness scale.