A chemically bonded phospho-silicate ceramic formed by chemically reacting a monovalent alkali metal phosphate (or ammonium hydrogen phosphate) and a sparsely soluble oxide, with a sparsely soluble silicate in an aqueous solution. The monovalent alkali metal phosphate (or ammonium hydrogen phosphate) and sparsely soluble oxide are both in powder form and combined in a stochiometric molar ratio range of (0.5-1.5):1 to form a binder powder. Similarly, the sparsely soluble silicate is also in powder form and mixed with the binder powder to form a mixture. Water is added to the mixture to form a slurry. The water comprises 50% by weight of the powder mixture in said slurry. The slurry is allowed to harden. The resulting chemically bonded phospho-silicate ceramic exhibits high flexural strength, high compression strength, low porosity and permeability to water, has a definable and bio-compatible chemical composition, and is readily and easily colored to almost any desired shade or hue.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-31-109-ENG-38 between the U.S. Department of Energy and University of Chicago operators of Argonne National Laboratory.