In many optical and precision engineering applications, low thermal distortion materials need to be bonded together reliably. Since high temperature bonding process ultimately introduce stresses in the bond, rendering it dimensionally instable, room temperature or near room temperature processes are preferred. Low thermal distortion materials such as silicon carbide and low thermal expansion glass ceramics are bonded at room temperature using hydroxide catalysis bonding with a silicate bonding material. The bonding procedure is explained and fracture toughness results are presented for SiC-SiC, Zerodur-Zerodur and SiC-Zerodur bonds. A surface treatment technique for hydrating the SiC surface is presented, which eliminates the need for pre-oxidized SiC surfaces when using HCB bonding. The bonds between surface treated bare SiC surfaces and thermally oxidized SiC surfaces are found to have comparable fracture toughness. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.