Embraced by the term special materials BCE summarizes all so called non-oxide high performance ceramics such as Silicon Nitride (Si3N4), Silicon Carbide (Si-infiltrated SiSiC or Silicon-free sintered SSiC), Boron Carbide (B4C) and Aluminium Nitride (AlN). All mentioned candidates offer different specific properties aiming for different fields of application. Silicon Nitride offers a high bending strength and fracture toughness likewise Zirconia material but showing a low CTE paired with high thermal conductivity.
The Carbides with excellent hardness values are competing mainly against Alumina (Al2O3) materials.
Aluminium Nitride is taking an exceptional position because of the extremely good thermal conductivity in range of 150…180 W/mK suited for high-performance electronic application, cruibles and so on.