Future of Silicon Science and Technology

  • F. W. Gordon Fearon


Silicon is the most abundant solid element in the earth’s crust and probably in the universe as a whole as far as we can tell. The earth’s crust contains almost 26% of silicon by weight combined with oxygen and other metals as sand or silicates. Mankind has worked with silicon based materials for thousands of years, ceramics, glasses, bricks and mortar, many useful materials which have been discovered, developed and utilized are based on silicon. However, our scientific understanding of these materials is relatively still in its infancy. It was not until the late 19th and early 20th century that scientists began to study silicon materials intensively, and it was not until the 1940’s that synthetic materials based on silicon were produced and employed. In the last fifty years the discovery, development and application of new silicon based materials has expanded rapidly so that today over 8000 distinct products can be identified, accounting for sales of over $6 billion worldwide, business which provides employment for at least 20,000 people. Will this growth continue?


Graft Copolymer Flame Spread Silicon Material Preceramic Polymer Silicon Base Material 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. W. Gordon Fearon
    • 1
  1. 1.Central R & DDow Corning CorporationMidlandUSA

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