Material Re-Visited: Steatite May be Old, but Still Up-to-Date!
Porcelain, the material from which plates and cups are made, was the
first ceramic feedstock to be processed for electrical engineering
applications. The second oldest material for such uses is soapstone.
Nowadays soap-stone and its derivatives (i.e. steatites) are indispensable
articles of every-day life and essential materials for industrial
applications. Steatites have outstanding dielectric properties and possess
great mechanical strength. Accordingly, they are used in an ever-growing
number of applications and often replace oxide ceramics. Their
favourable cost/benefit ratios make steatites a cost-effective alternative
to oxide ceramics such as alumina and zirconia.