New materials for microwave cookware heat faster with less energy

You may soon be enjoying microwave popcorn and other 'nuked' foods and beverages faster than ever before, while saving on electricity. Researchers in Pennsylvania and Japan report development of new ceramic materials that heat up faster and retain heat longer than conventional microwave cookware while using less energy.

The ceramics are made from a mixtures of magnetite and petalite and are reported to heat faster than commercially available microwave cookware.

"Rice cooks in about half or less time," the researchers say. Other applications may include pizza delivery, since the food would stay warmer for longer.

A rice cooker and plates made from this material are already being sold by ASAHI Ceramics Research Co. in Japan.
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The report will be published in the August 26 issue of the journal Chemistry of Materials.

Image credit: Sridhar Komarneni

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