Synthetic Silicon Carbide

Silicon carbide (SiC) is an artificial material widely produced as an abrasive and diamond simulant of gem quality. Additionally, this mineral occurs naturally as the rare mineral Moissanite.

Strength, hardness, durability and corrosion resistance enable its use in high-performance engineering applications such as pump bearings, valves and sandblasting injectors.


Silicon carbide (SiC) is an indestructible material with diverse industrial uses, featuring a very high melting point, thermal stability and imperviousness to chemical attack. Smelted and reshaped SiC can be used in fabricating products like abrasives, metallurgical tools, ceramic components radiation sensors and photocatalysts; its combination of properties makes it one of the hardest materials known to man; second only to diamond and boron nitride in terms of hardness. SiC production involves complex procedures requiring sophisticated techniques.

Preparing raw materials is the first step of synthetic SiC production, and is best done using an electric resistance furnace equipped with graphite electrodes, such as that devised by Edward Goodrich Acheson. Once combined, silica and carbon are heated at high temperatures before an electric current passes through it to cause it to melt and solidify into an ingot that must then be refined, refined some more, remelted again, sifted for fine particles, refined further before finally being combined with other raw materials to form final powder that can then be mixed together as part of production of synthetic SiC.

Reaction-bonded processes offer another means of producing SiC, in which material is made by mixing it with plasticizer and shaping it before firing it. This method has the advantage of producing SiC material in very small sizes for use in advanced electronic applications; additionally, pure single crystal versions can also be produced and sliced like wafers for solid state devices.

Porous silicon carbide (PSC) is produced by reacting it with hydrogen at high temperatures. Thanks to its large surface area and chemical inertness, PSC can be utilized as an adsorbent or support for heterogeneous catalysts, with added potential benefits provided by being dissolve-able into various solvents, thus increasing its usefulness further.

Silicon Carbide can exist in various structural polytypes, including alpha and beta variants, both featuring six carbon atoms bound to four silicon atoms in an tetrahedral arrangement. Beta modifications often feature cubic zinc blende or sphalerite crystal structures for crystal formation, making this variety the most prevalent of its kinds.


Silicon carbide possesses unique properties that make it suitable for a range of applications, from hardness and strength testing, corrosion resistance, thermal conductivity and thermal conductivity. Due to these attributes, silicon carbide is commonly found in high-powered electronic devices.

Reaction-bonded silicon carbide can be manufactured through various processes. One such approach involves mixing SiC powder with powdered carbon and plasticizer, shaping the mixture into an object, and burning off any plasticizer left behind. Pure SiC can also be deposited via chemical vapor deposition (CVD), used by semiconductor manufacturers to manufacture wafers. However, this requires significant energy and equipment investments, and producing large single crystals of cubic SiC may prove challenging with this technique.

Synthetic silicon carbide has multiple applications, from industrial abrasives to gemstones called moissanite. Moissanite is an exquisite mineral with similar features to diamond, first created synthetically by Edward Acheson in 1891 before later discovered naturally by Henri Moissan in Arizona’s Canyon Diablo meteorite in 1905 and given the name.

Silicon carbide can also be used as a protective layer in abrasive tools like saw blades. Ceramics containing silicon carbide have many applications across industries and technologies due to its heat resistance; temperatures up to 1600 degC can be reached without significant heat expansion or temperature increase.

Silicone carbide offers more than heat resistance; its electrical conductivity and low density make it ideal for high-voltage applications like electric vehicles. Silicone carbide can increase motor power while decreasing motor size/weight to increase driving distance while prolonging battery life while decreasing inverter system energy consumption.

Silicon carbide’s properties also make it an excellent material choice for space applications, including shielding solar panels from radiation exposure and harmful environmental conditions, like those encountered on missions like bepiColombo. Furthermore, its rigidity, low thermal expansion rate and excellent electrical conductivity make it suitable for spacecraft subsystems.


Synthetic silicon carbide has long been utilized by numerous industries due to its strength and hardness. It is used for making cutting tools as well as semiconductor electronics devices which require high temperatures and voltages. Furthermore, synthetic silicon carbide has proven useful in producing lightweight jet engines and fuel cells; making it an excellent material choice in high temperature environments with multiple advantages over competing materials.

Silicon carbide synthesis is one of the world’s premier industrial processes, used widely across metallurgical, refractory and chemical industries. Strong, hard, and resilient ceramic is an excellent material to use when manufacturing high-performance ceramics, high-pressure refractories, industrial furnace components, refractory bricks, or thermocouple tubes for high temperature use. Porous silicon carbide can be altered by depositing metals and oxides to increase its catalytic performance in various processes, such as direct oxidation of butane into maleic anhydride, isomerization of linear saturated hydrocarbons, hydrogenation of butadiene, carbon dioxide reforming, methane oxidation.

Silicon carbide, a composition of carbon and silicon, features an extremely hard Mohs hardness of 9-10, making it comparable to diamond’s 10. This material boasts outstanding resistance against oxidation, corrosion, thermal shock and high temperatures – perfect for semiconductor applications in harsh conditions! Silicon carbide’s chemical inertness and wide bandgap make it suitable for semiconductor applications in harsh conditions.

Edward Goodrich Acheson first developed silicon carbide abrasives commercially for commercial use in 1890 under the name “Carborundum,” and they remain one of the most widely-used abrasives today. You can even find it found within certain gemstones (notably moissanite) or high performance saw blades!

Synthetic silicon carbide can be manufactured through various processes, including carbothermal reduction of silica-carbon composites and chemical vapor deposition. Both processes produce highly pure silicon carbide material suitable for various applications – it’s most widely used in the refractory industry due to its ability to withstand extreme temperatures, currents and voltages while remaining chemical resistant and non-toxic.


Silicon carbide is a hard material ideal for grinding, cutting and lapping applications. It offers superior corrosion and chemical resistance as well as being capable of withstanding high temperatures, and boasts excellent electrical properties including having 10x greater voltage resistance than ordinary silicon and outperforming gallium nitride systems exceeding 1000V in electrical vehicles and solar power inverters. These attributes make silicon carbide highly valued as an investment material.

CBN microgrit and powder is often used in abrasive materials for grinding non-ferrous metals and hard ceramics, typically available as black or green microgrit or powder. CBN is also an integral component of composite armour (such as Chobham armour) and bulletproof vests; additionally it may be doped with phosphorus to create an n-type semiconductor and doped with beryllium, boron or aluminum to form a p-type semiconductor.

Synthetic silicon carbide prices have skyrocketed recently due to growing demand in applications like abrasives and industrial applications, leading to higher consumption, production costs, energy bills and energy cost increases. Meanwhile, recent technology that creates silicon carbide from waste materials has reduced production costs significantly.

Synthetic silicon carbide can be manufactured via the Lely process, whereby pure SiC powder is melted in rectangular-cross-section electrical resistance furnaces before doping it with either phosphorus (for N-type semiconductor production), beryllium aluminum or boron for p-type semiconductor production or sintered into ceramic materials by sintered process. A more expensive way is growing cubic SiC via chemical vapor deposition (CVD).

Store it in an airtight environment to avoid reactions with oxygen that would result in silicon dioxide formation, potentially damaging the material. Transport in 1000 kg bags or 25 kg bags ensures proper handling, protection from moisture during transportation and timely arrival at its final destination. Although handling costs for this material are higher than similar metals used for industrial processes, storage prices tend to be more cost effective for this material.

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