R & D Vacancies

International Syalons (Newcastle) Limited is the UK's leading manufacturer of advanced nitride ceramics. We are a fast–growing, long–established manufacturing company supplying advanced ceramics to industries such as oil and gas, automotive and molten metal handling.

To help us keep our leading position in materials manufacturing, we are continuously seeking enthusiastic, self–motivated Scientists and Engineers to strengthen our research and development team, to help us develop new materials, applications and processes.

We welcome unsolicited applications and would be interested to hear from anyone who can demonstrate some of the following skills:

  • Experience and knowledge of ceramics, especially non-oxide ceramics.
  • Experience and knowledge of advanced manufacturing techniques.
  • Be willing to do hands on practical work (essential).
  • Have excellent interpersonal skills, including excellent written and spoken English (essential).
  • Have an understanding of the requirements of advanced ceramics in industry.
  • Have a knowledge of materials testing and analysis techniques, such as XRD, mechanical testing etc.
  • Project management experience.

At ISN we promote personal initiative and value people who can work independently. For the right candidate we can offer a position with some of the following responsibilities:

  • Materials development including nitrides, oxides and ceramic composites.
  • Process development including advanced casting, pressing and moulding techniques.
  • Developing advanced nitride powders.
  • Materials testing and analysis.
  • Liaison with customers.

We offer permanent positions with a competitive salary and the opportunity to work for a rapidly growing, ambitious company with a challenging but attractive career path.

Should this opportunity be of interest to you or for more information please contact our Technical DirectorNick Fecitt.

Chairman Tony Mitchell celebrates 10 years with ISN

Tony Mitchell joined the Company in August 2001 and this month marks his first 10 years of service. He expressed his pride in the progress of the Company over this period and praised the staff and the management team, particularly Operations Director Ian Denton and Technical Director Nick Fecitt.

Tony says "This management team have focussed on customer service, quality and innovation. These are the building blocks of a great business and we are well on the way to achieving greater things. We have an expert workforce who take pride in solving customer problems, no matter how great the challenge, and seek to delight the customer with our service. Quality is their ethos as we strive to excede customer expectations. We all believe in teamwork, in sharing problem-solving, in innovation and learning and we share the benefits as we build the Company. It is a great pleasure and privilege to be part of this team."

Ian Denton adds "Tony has consistently stressed the need to grow the business through customer service, quality and innovation and has guided the Company forward and continues with our ambitious plans for the future. The strength of the Company lies in our sense of teamwork and focus."

Nick Fecitt also says "Tony continually presses for more investment in R&D and product and process innovation. We face many challenges with determination and our staff enjoy rising to the challenge."

Jim Rising

The Board have announced the retirement of Jim Rising as Director and Company Secretary. Jim was a founder member of the Company in its present form, seventeen years ago, when he was invited to join the Company by the late Chairman, Dr Ralph Iley. Jim now feels ready to spend more time with his family and to enjoy his travel and gardening interests and follow Newcastle United.

Jim says "I have enjoyed very much my long service with the Company and have appreciated the opportunity to work with such an outstanding management team. I am particularly proud of the progress and growth of the Company in recent years and delighted that, as I leave, the Company has just recorded its highest ever sales figures, has invested heavily in new equipment and now employs more staff than ever. I shall enjoy my retirement all the more knowing that the Company is heading in the right direction".

Chairman Tony Mitchell says "All staff members have benefitted considerably from Jim's skilful management, wisdom and diplomacy over the years and he will be a hard act to follow. He has constantly emphasised the total commitment to customer satisfaction and his guidance has been greatly valued".

Christine Mitchell has been appointed as Company Secretary with immediate effect.

ISN Invest in New Equipment & Personnel

The last 16 months has seen International Syalons turnover reach record levels. This has been due to demand from existing customers and the development of new and exciting business opportunities in a range of markets such as wear, molten metal handling, chemical and process and aerospace. In order to meet this increased demand ISN has invested in additional personnel and equipment. Last year we increased our staff by around 20% and so far this year we have recruited an additional 20% with more to come.

There has already been a substantial investment in critical equipment with recent purchases including a large capacity sintering furnace and iso-static press. Significantly within the past 3 months we have installed a new 4 axis CNC turning centre, a specialised centreless grinder and a laser particle size analyser. We are increasing capacity in our machine shops with additional machines. This investment in equipment and personnel will ensure we are prepared for the challenges ahead.

Works Manager

The Board are pleased to announce the appointment of Michael Bell as Works Manager with immediate effect. Michael, who has been employed by the Company for 16 years, will be responsible for all aspects of production. He will focus on improvements to quality, efficiency and scheduling in order to provide a world-class service to our customers.

Chairman Tony Mitchell says "Michael is a top talent and is eager to delight our customers with an even better service than we have achieved so far. He has the total confidence of the Board and will be fully supported in the changes to be made. He has demonstrated his commitment to the Company by investing in its shares and, through his years of service with the Company, has demonstrated his drive for quality and performance. We are excited by the changes to be made."


The Board are pleased to announce the appointment of Anthony Mitchell as Chairman of the Company with immediate effect. He will retain his role of Managing Director.

Mr Mitchell has a chartered accountancy background and spent over twenty years with Cookson Group in a range of senior roles, including a development role with advanced technology subsidiaries and as the Ceramics Division Finance Director and Corporate Development Manager.

Mr Mitchell says "My dear friend and predecessor, Dr Ralph Iley, has set us a mission to grow the business through innovation and customer service. As the effects of the recession ease, we shall redouble our efforts in research and development, in providing solutions to our customers' problems and in further improving the quality and timeliness of our service to all our customers. This is our way forward."

Dr. Ralph Iley

It is with great sadness that the Board of Directors announces the death of our Chairman and Founder, Dr. Ralph Iley, after a long illness.

Ralph has been a strong supporter of our technology from the outset and his mission to grow the business through customer service and innovation has driven the Company forward. We honour his passing by re–affirming our commitment to all customers, suppliers and staff to work ceaselessly to pursue his mission.

International Syalons Awarded ISO 9001:2008

International Syalons (Newcastle) Limited has great pleasure in announcing that it has successfully been assessed by Lloyds Register of Quality Assurance against the revised international quality standard ISO 9001:2008. This Quality Management System applies to the manufacture of advanced ceramic powders and products.

In achieving the ISO 9001:2008 certification our goal is to continually improve every aspect in the manufacture and supply of our advanced ceramics. This includes maintaining detailed records, reacting to customer feedback, regularly reviewing our processes and monitoring the quality system itself for its effectiveness.

The Company was one of the first companies in the UK to achieve the ISO 9001:2000 standard and subsequently the latest 2008 standard.

This award has resulted from much hard work by everyone at the Company, particularly the Quality Department, and demonstrates our commitment to providing a first class service to our customers.

Applications of Syalons

As modern industry continues to demand stronger, harder, more wear resistant and heat resistant materials, which will operate cost effectively in hostile environments, it has become essential to seek alternative engineering materials.

The discovery of silicon nitride in 1857 by Deville and Whaler caused no excitement among the engineering fraternity of the day. Yet the announcement more than a century later, in 1972, that an alloy of this same material had been found stimulated enormous interest and triggered off investigations on a worldwide scale. The reasons why the two events were heralded in such dissimilar ways gives us an insight into the developments that have taken place in our major industries.

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New Directors Appointed

The Directors of International Syalons (Newcastle) Limited have great pleasure in announcing that Mr. Ian Denton and Mr. Nick Fecitt have been appointed Directors of the Company with immediate effect.

Ian, who joins the Board as Operations Director, started his career in research. He was appointed as Quality Manager when the Company was formed and was responsible for the Company becoming one of the first in the UK to achieve ISO 9001 status. He was appointed Operations Manager in 2005 and has been instrumental in driving the Company forward and establishing its present position of leadership in sialon ceramic engineering, through continually improving standards and customer service. Ian will continue to be responsible for all aspects of sales and production.

Nick, who joins the Board as Technical Director, is another founder member of the Company's staff and, leading his research and development team, has been highly successful in developing the Company's wide range of Syalon ceramics through material technology and process design. He is internationally recognised as one of the world's leading experts on sialon ceramics and maintains relationships with a number of prestigious research establishments, so as to maintain the Company's position in the forefront of advanced ceramic engineering.

Managing Director, Tony Mitchell, says "We are extremely fortunate to have Ian and Nick on the Board to continue the Company's growth through innovation and customer service. Most of our customers are already aware of and benefit from the problem-solving skills that are available through Ian, Nick and their respective teams. This is our way forward."