SCHOTT solutions no. 1/2009 > Home Appliances

In the 1970s, SCHOTT Ceran® revolutionized the stove and the kitchen. In 1980, the one millionth glass ceramic cooktop rolled off the belt. Photo: SCHOTT
SCHOTT Ceran® is definitely in: Production of these glass ceramic cooktop panels has nearly ­doubled over the last five years. Photo: SCHOTT/J. Meyer

Cooking in Style


SCHOTT manufactures its 100 millionth Ceran® cooktop panel and transforms the kitchen into a place for encounters.


Birgit Kranzusch

Cooking is currently in and receives a great deal of media attention. But even far away from the tv cameras, more and more people are devoting a lot of their spare time to cooking. Nevertheless, the focus isn’t always on elaborate recipes, but also on the kitchen as a meeting place. SCHOTT has contributed towards this development with its customized and futuristic products. Today, the kitchen is a room in which design and appearance are of major importance. This has not always been the case, however. At the beginning of the 20th century, kitchens mainly performed a practical function and offered very little technical support or design. Cooking technology continued to develop during the postwar period. Electric coil ranges became mass products, yet offered hardly any latitude for individual designs. They were also difficult to clean and extremely sensitive to scratches. Cooking on glass ceramic was hard to imagine back then.
Appearance and design reign in modern kitchens. Ceran Cleartrans® cooktop panels provide design impulses. Photo: SCHOTT
This finally changed in 1971 when a company called Imperial presented the first Ceran® cooktop panel at Domotechnica. It was developed from the ceramic material Zerodur®, which had been used as a mirror substrate for astronomical telescopes. This product innovation marked the beginning of a new era for the home appliance industry and revolutionized the stove in terms of both technology and design. This smooth and easy to clean cooktop panel made everyday life a lot easier, saved time while cooking and gave the stove and, therefore, the entire kitchen a more luxurious look.

In the meantime, SCHOTT Ceran® has managed to become an important design element; therefore manufacturing of this glass ceramic has nearly doubled over the last five years. In the fall, SCHOTT will manufacture its 100 millionth cooktop panel. “The expansion of capacities in order to meet rising demand and the quality expectations of our customers was largely responsible for this increase,” says Dr. Ioannis Kosmas, Vice President of the Glass Ceramics Business Segment. “This included automated manufacturing techniques and a patented technology for the melting process that is unique in the world today,” he adds.
Sights set on innovation: SCHOTT is constantly working to improve both the material and the design of Ceran® cooktop panels. Photo: SCHOTT
As one of the world’s leading manufacturers of glass ceramic cooktop panels, SCHOTT considers itself a provider of change to the industry. This culminates in innovative products in various colors and shapes that offer kitchen and home appliance manufacturers new possibilities in designing their appliances. This, in turn, allows them to distinguish themselves from others. Thanks to ongoing research and advanced development at the main plant in Mainz, both the designs and the materials have constantly been improved. SCHOTT intends to continue to stand out in the marketplace by offering innovative products. “Only 20 percent of all relevant households all over the world currently cook on glass ceramic, therefore, the market is still huge,” explains Stefan Marc Schmidt, Vice President of Mar­keting and Sales for Home Tech, and adds: “We are well positioned with trendsetting products and ultramodern technology ‘Made in Germany’. The Ceran® cooktop panel that doesn’t contain the toxic heavy metals arsenic and antimony is only one of these innovations. After all, more and more consumers are now deciding to buy products manufactured with sustainability in mind that also protect the environment. A trend that SCHOTT observed quite early and has consistently followed. <|