Answered By: Aprille Nace Last Updated: Oct 28, 2016 Views: 24
Thank you for contacting us with your query. Silicon has many uses--silica is an ingredient used in soda lime glass. More information on silica from Wikipedia is below. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silicon
Silicon is a chemical element with symbol Si and atomic number 14. It is a tetravalent metalloid, less reactive than its chemical analog carbon, the nonmetal directly above it in the periodic table, but more reactive than germanium, the metalloid directly below it in the table. Controversy about silicon's character dates to its discovery; it was first prepared and characterized in pure form in 1823. In 1808, it was given the name silicium (from Latin: silex, hard stone or flint), with an -ium word-ending to suggest a metal, a name which the element retains in several non-English languages. However, its final English name, first suggested in 1817, reflects the more physically similar elements carbon and boron.
Silicon is the eighth most common element in the universe by mass, but very rarely occurs as the pure free element in nature. It is most widely distributed in dusts, sands, planetoids, and planets as various forms of silicon dioxide (silica) or silicates. Over 90% of the Earth's crust is composed of silicate minerals, making silicon the second most abundant element in the Earth's crust (about 28% by mass) after oxygen.
Most silicon is used commercially without being separated, and indeed often with little processing of compounds from nature. These include direct industrial building-use of clays, silica sand and stone. Silicate goes into Portland cement for mortar and stucco, and when combined with silica sand and gravel, to make concrete. Silicates are also in whiteware ceramics such as porcelain, and in traditional quartz-based soda-lime glass and many other specialty glasses. More modern silicon compounds such as silicon carbide form abrasives and high-strength ceramics. Silicon is the basis of the widely used synthetic polymers called silicones.
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