Item #: CH-LiCOqp
Priced per quarter-pound. Quantity discounts are available.
In ceramics, Lithium Carbonate (LiCO3) is the best source of lithium for making glazes. Lithium is a high temperature flux, which means that it causes glazes to melt at relatively high temperatures, and is typically used in small amounts (5% or less). Because it is alkaline, it tends to produce fluid glazes with glossy surfaces. Lithium carbonate reduces thermal expansion and increases a glaze’s firing range. Lithium also improves the brightness and durability of glazes.
Some potters may notice that their lithium carbonate-containing glazes may have a tendency to pinhole or blister. This generally tends to happen when the lithium carbonate content is on the higher side, and it is caused by lithium carbonate's off-gassing during firing.
As for the effects of lithium carbonate on claybodies, you will find that this is a material frequently used in contemporary cookwares due to its low thermal expansions qualities -- this means that when a claybody has to move from a hot environment to a cold one (or vice-versa), the addition of lithium carbonate may help to cut back on thermal expansion enough to prevent cracking. Research is still being done on this material as a ceramic body additive.
The Ceramic Shop’s lithium carbonate is available in a fine-mesh powder.
WARNING: This product can expose you to chemicals including Lithium carbonate, which are known to the State of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm. For more information go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov.