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Cold sintering of ceramics and glasses: A review
Traditionally ceramic artifacts are processed at high temperatures (> 1000 degrees C) by classical sintering techniques such as solid state, liquid phase and pressure-assisted sintering. Recently, inspired from the geology, novel sintering approaches that allow the densification of ceramic components at relatively low temperatures <= 400 degrees C have been proposed. While initial efforts for such low temperature densification concept were developed in the mid-70s, the topic has become increasingly prominent in the last decade. Currently, these low temperature methods can be classified into four main groups: (i) hydrothermal reaction sintering (HRS), (ii) hydrothermal hot pressing (HHP), (iii) pressure-assisted densification techniques: room-temperature densification (RTD), cold sintering (CS), warm press (WP), and finally no-pressure assisted method called (iv) reactive hydrothermal liquid phase densification (rHLPD). Above named techniques are commonly assisted by an aqueous solution used as either reactant or transient liquid phase to assist densification. Starting from the background in traditional sintering processes, this review aims to explore in depth the existing literature about low temperature densification approaches along with their advantages & disadvantages, and probable application areas.