SILLICON AND SILLICATES Silicon Nonmetallic to semimetallic chemical element, chemical symbol Si, atomic number 14.
It never occurs free but is found in almost all rocks and in sand, clay, and soils, combined with oxygen as silica (silicon dioxide, SiO2) or with oxygen and metals as silicate minerals. It occurs in many plants and some animals. Pure silicon is a hard, dark gray solid with a metallic luster and the same crystal structure as diamond. It is an extremely important semiconductor; doped with boron, phosphorus, or arsenic, it is used in various electronic circuit and switching devices, including computer chips, transistors, and diodes. Silicon is also used in metallurgy as a reducing agent and in steel, brass, and bronze. Its usual valence in compounds is 4. Silica Silica is the scientific name for a group of minerals made of silicon and oxygen. Silica is found in most mineral deposits in the world in both crystalline and non-crystalline (amorphous) forms. Crystalline silica has its oxygen and silicon atoms arranged in a three-dimensional repeating pattern. Amorphous forms of silica have a random pattern. Crystalline silica occurs in several forms, including quartz, cristobalite and tridymite. Quartz is the most common form of crystalline silica. Silica is a major component of sand, rock, and mineral ores and is the second most common mineral in the earth’s crust. The generic term refers to the chemical compound silicon dioxide (SiO 2) . Crystalline silica is essentially insoluble in water, but its solubility is increased with heating or increasing pH. It also reacts with most metallic oxides. Silica is used in the form of sand and clay for many purposes; as quartz, it may be heated to form special glasses. Sillicates When silicon is mixed with other elements, the compound is often known as a silicate. Silicates are extremely abundant, and are used in a wide range of industrial processes. They can be heated or treated with other chemical compounds to release their silicon or to bind with other materials for various purposes. When alloyed with metal, silicon increases the strength and hardness of the metal. Most industries use silicates in their products to make them stronger and more durable. Silicon is also commonly used as a base material for sealers and some types of synthetic oils. Silicone Silicone which is a chemical compound. Silicone contains silicon, and harnesses many of its mineral properties. Silicone is used in soaps and medical implants, insulators and synthetic materials. Non stick baking supplies, sealers, and shields for electrical components are also made from silicone, which is a highly durable, flexible compound.
The raw materials used in the making of glass materials are obtained from the earth's crust. Silica or silicon(IV) dioxide, SiO2, form the most important component of glass. In the SiO2 molecule, each silicon atom is held in a tetrahedral structure by four oxygen atoms. Each oxygen atom is held by two silicon atoms. This is repeated until a giant three-dimensional molecule results. It is a mixture of two or more types of metallic silicates but the main component is silicon(IV) dioxide. Glass has the following properties: 1. 2. 3. 4.
Transparent and not porous Inactive chemically Can be cleaned easily Good insulators of heat and electricity Hard and brittle Can withstand compression but not pressure
Due to the above reasons and the low cost involved to produce glass, it is used in industry to make bottles, cooking utensils, plates and bowls, laboratory apparatus (such as conical flask, beakers and test tubes), window panes, bulbs and others. Different types of glass can be obtained depending on the composition of substances in it.
Soda lime glass:
obtained when limestone (CaCO3) and sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) are mixed with molten silica and cooled down. known as soft glass it has a low melting point. Most glass produced is soda lime glass. it breaks easily mainly used to make kitchen utensils.
formed when a mixture of lead(II) oxide, sodium oxide and silica is heated together. contains a higher percentage of PbO. Its refractive index and density being high, it has a glittering and attractive surface also called crystal glass. Boron oxide (B2O3) and sodium carbonate is added to molten silica to obtain borosilicate glass or pyrex.. The presence of B2O3 makes the glass able to withstand high temperatures and chemical reaction. It does not break easily, thus it is used to make laboratory apparatus and cooking utensils. Sand (silica) is heated until it melts at 1700°C, and the viscous liquid is cooled immediately. This produces a transparent solid with an uneven arrangement of atoms, called fused silicate glass. This glass cannot expand or contract easily when there are temperature changes. It’s has a high melting point. It is known as quartz glass.
Fused silicate glass:
The latest use of glass is to make photochromic glass and conducting glass
Photochromic glass Photochromic glass is very sensitive to light. It darkens in the presence of bright light and lightens when the amount of sunlight lessens. The glass is produced by adding silver chloride (or silver bromide) and some copper(II) chloride to normal glass. Silver halides decompose to silver and its halogen when exposed to ultraviolet rays. It is silver which makes the glass become dark. When there is a decrease in light, silver chloride is formed again. Therefore the glass lightens. Conducting glass Conducting glass is a type of glass which can conduct electricity. It is obtained by coating a thin layer of a conducting material around the glass, usually indium tin(IV) oxide or ITO. Conducting glass can also be obtained by embedding thin gold strips into a piece of glass. This is used to make the front windows of aeroplanes which tend to mist at very high heights. By passing an electric current through this glass (containing gold as conductors), the water of condensation will dry up.
Glass Composition Properties • Low melting point (700°C) Soda lime,glass SiO2 – 70% Na20 – 15% CaO – 10% Others – 4% • Mouldable into shapes • Cheap • Breakable • Can withstand high heat • High density and refractive index • Glittering surface • Soft • Low melting point (600°C) SiO2 – 80% Borosilicate glass B203 – 13% (Pyrex) Na2O – 4% Al203 – 2% • Resistant to high heat and chemical reaction Glass apparatus in laboratories • Does not break easily • Allows infra-red rays but not ultra-violet rays • High melting point (1700°C) Scientific apparatus like lenses on Fused silicate glass SiO2 – 99% 6203 - 1% • Expensive • Allows ultraviolet light to pass through • Difficult to melt or mould into shape spectrometer Optical lenses Laboratory apparatus Cooking utensils Glass containers, Glass panes, Mirrors, Lamps and bulbs, Plates and bowls Bottles Uses
Lead glass (crystal)
SiO2 – 70% Na20 – 20% PbO – 10%
Containers for drinks and fruit Decorative glass and lamps Crystal glassware Lenses for spectacles