Silicon Carbide Uses

Silicon Carbide (SiC) is an extremely hard, synthetically produced crystalline compound of silicon and carbon. Commonly referred to as Carborundum/Karbrndm/, silicon carbide exhibits great strength.

Natural SiC can be found as the rare gemstone moissanite, as well as in very limited amounts in meteorites, corundum deposits, and kimberlite. Commercial production typically involves heating silica sand with carbon at high temperatures in an electric furnace to produce SiC.


Silicon carbide (SiC), one of the hardest materials on Earth, has become an indispensable tool in abrasive applications. A major constituent of grinding wheels and abrasive cloths, Silicon carbide also excels at cutting nonferrous metals as well as refractory parts.

Silicon Carbide Maintains Its Abrasive Properties

In contrast to sandpaper made with other abrasives that wear down quickly over time, silicon carbide stands the test of time and wear, producing consistent results and precision across different materials. This durability also enables professionals and DIY enthusiasts alike to achieve expected results for their projects.

SiC is widely utilized in high-voltage power electronics devices, such as Schottky barrier diodes and bipolar transistors. By increasing electric vehicle driving distances and improving battery management systems, as well as making high-power converters smaller and lighter; SiC can lead to reduced charging station costs for electric vehicles.


Silicon carbide is a vital element in ceramics due to its excellent resistance against corrosion and oxidation, with low expansion and heat tolerance properties. Silicon carbide ceramic is often utilized in kiln shelves, burner nozzles and jet tubes; due to its resistance against erosion, corrosion and abrasion.

SiC is most frequently employed as an abrasive material due to its hard and versatile composition; this allows it to be made into grinding wheels and cloth. Furthermore, SiC can be combined with other ceramic materials to form strong and resilient ceramic structures such as bulletproof plates and nozzles as well as high temperature bearings.

Silicon carbide’s atomic structure is tightly packed, featuring two primary coordination tetrahedra (consisting of Silicon and four Carbon atoms) connected by corners to form polytypes with various stacking sequences resulting in distinct crystal structures with their own specific properties – alpha silicon carbide is most frequently encountered among these.


Silicon carbide is used in some high-voltage semiconductor devices. It features a higher breakdown voltage than silicon and performs well under high-temperature environments – ideal for applications such as power electronics for electric vehicles and solar inverters, for instance.

This robust material boasts excellent thermal conductivity, making it useful in applications like power generation and aerospace electronics. Furthermore, its melting point makes it suitable for ceramic fabrication as thin sheets, or it can be added as an additive to other materials to increase their mechanical properties.

Pure SiC is an electrical insulator, but doping it with impurities changes its electrical characteristics to behave like a semiconductor. When doped, SiC can become P-type or N-type devices by adding aluminum, gallium, boron, nitrogen or phosphorus atoms – leading to various polytypes of silicon carbide with differing arrangements along the c-axis and having various crystal structures like cubic, hexagonal or rhombohedral structures.

Fuel Cells

Silicon carbide is an indispensable material in many industrial processes. It serves as an abrasive in grinding wheels, cutting discs and sandpaper and is also utilized to produce ceramics, refractories and wear-resistant parts.

Scientists are exploring using nanoporous cubic silicon carbide to separate water and produce hydrogen gas for fuel cells – this could provide an innovative new source of renewable energy to combat global warming.

Silicon carbide (SiC) finds widespread application in power electronics, where it serves to replace IGBTs and bipolar transistors that suffer from high turn-on resistance at high breakdown voltages with devices that operate more reliably at higher temperatures with much reduced switching losses. SiC is used extensively as an IGBT replacement.

Goldman Sachs estimates that using SiC in EV power converter systems could reduce size and cost by 30%, which would allow manufacturers to produce more affordable cars with SiC power converters.

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