Jöns Jacob Berzelius discovered the silicon element in 1823.
The MOSFET, also known as the MOS transistor, is the key component of the Silicon Age. It was invented by Mohamed M. Atalla and Dawon Kahng at Bell Labs in 1959.
Silicon crystallizes in a diamond cubic crystal structure by forming sp3 hybrid orbitals.
Phase diagram of the Fe–Si system
Condensed polysilicic acid
A typical zeolite structure
Silicon carbide
A hydrosilylation reaction, in which Si–H is added to an unsaturated substrate
Structure of polydimethylsiloxane, the principal component of silicones
Ferrosilicon alloy
Silicon wafer with mirror finish
A diatom, enclosed in a silica cell wall

Chemical element with the symbol Si and atomic number 14.

- Silicon

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Silicon dioxide

Structural motif found in α-quartz, but also found in almost all forms of silicon dioxide
Typical subunit for low pressure silicon dioxide
Relationship between refractive index and density for some SiO2 forms
Manufactured fumed silica with maximum surface area of 380 m2/g
Bundle of optical fibres composed of high purity silica
Quartz sand (silica) as main raw material for commercial glass production

Silicon dioxide, also known as silica, is an oxide of silicon with the chemical formula SiO2, most commonly found in nature as quartz and in various living organisms.


Type of chemical element which has a preponderance of properties in between, or that are a mixture of, those of metals and nonmetals.

Copper-germanium alloy pellets, likely ~84% Cu; 16% Ge. When combined with silver the result is a tarnish resistant sterling silver. Also shown are two silver pellets.
Arsenic trioxide or white arsenic, one of the most toxic and prevalent forms of arsenic. The antileukaemic properties of white arsenic were first reported in 1878.
Optical fibers, usually made of pure silicon dioxide glass, with additives such as boron trioxide or germanium dioxide for increased sensitivity
Archaic blue light signal, fuelled by a mixture of sodium nitrate, sulfur, and (red) arsenic trisulfide
Semiconductor-based electronic components. From left to right: a transistor, an integrated circuit, and an LED. The elements commonly recognised as metalloids find widespread use in such devices, as elemental or compound semiconductor constituents (Si, Ge or GaAs, for example) or as doping agents (B, Sb, Te, for example).
Boron, shown here in the form of its β-rhombohedral phase (its most thermodynamically stable allotrope)
Silicon has a blue-grey metallic lustre.
Germanium is sometimes described as a metal
Arsenic, sealed in a container to prevent tarnishing
Antimony, showing its brilliant lustre
Tellurium, described by Dmitri Mendeleev as forming a transition between metals and nonmetals
Carbon (as graphite). Delocalized valence electrons within the layers of graphite give it a metallic appearance.
High purity aluminium is much softer than its familiar alloys. People who handle it for the first time often ask if it is the real thing.
Grey selenium, being a photoconductor, conducts electricity around 1,000 times better when light falls on it, a property used since the mid-1870s in various light-sensing applications
Iodine crystals, showing a metallic lustre. Iodine is a semiconductor in the direction of its planes, with a band gap of ~1.3 eV. It has an electrical conductivity of 1.7 × 10−8 S•cm−1 at room temperature. This is higher than selenium but lower than boron, the least electrically conducting of the recognised metalloids.
White tin (left) and grey tin (right). Both forms have a metallic appearance.

The six commonly recognised metalloids are boron, silicon, germanium, arsenic, antimony, and tellurium.

Carbon group

In the periodic table of the elements, each numbered column is a group.

The carbon group is a periodic table group consisting of carbon (C), silicon (Si), germanium (Ge), tin (Sn), lead (Pb), and flerovium (Fl).

Jöns Jacob Berzelius

Swedish chemist.

Illustration of Berzelius (published 1903)
Portrait by Olof Johan Södermark (1790–1848). Print Artist: Charles W. Sharpe, d. 1875(76)
Daguerreotype of Berzelius.
The Letters of Jöns Jakob Berzelius and Christian Friedrich Schönbein 1836 1847, London 1900
Statue of Berzelius in the center of Berzelii Park, Stockholm
Berzelianite included in calcite from the Skrikerum mine in Sweden

Among the many minerals and elements he studied, he is credited with discovering cerium and selenium, and with being the first to isolate silicon and thorium.

Silicon carbide

Moissanite single crystal (≈1 mm in size)
A replication of H. J. Round's LED experiments
Synthetic SiC crystals ~3 mm in diameter
Two six-inch wafers made of silicon carbide
Synthetic SiC Lely crystals
Silicon carbide, image taken under a stereoscopic microscope.
Cutting disks made of SiC
Silicon carbide is used for trauma plates of ballistic vests
The Porsche Carrera GT's silicon carbide "carbon-ceramic" disk brake
Ultraviolet LED
Test flame and glowing SiC fibers. The flame is about 7 cm tall.
A moissanite
 engagement ring
Piece of silicon carbide used in steel making

Silicon carbide (SiC), also known as carborundum, is a hard chemical compound containing silicon and carbon.

Silicate mineral

Silicate minerals are rock-forming minerals made up of silicate groups.

Copper silicate mineral chrysocolla
Diatomaceous earth, a biogenic form of silica as viewed under a microscope. The imaged region measures approximately 1.13 by 0.69 mm.
Orthosilicate anion . The grey ball represents the silicon atom, and the red balls are the oxygen atoms.
Nesosilicate specimens at the Museum of Geology in South Dakota
Kyanite crystals (unknown scale)
Pyrosilicate anion.
Sorosilicate exhibit at Museum of Geology in South Dakota
Cyclosilicate specimens at the Museum of Geology, South Dakota
Silica family (SiO2 3D network), β-quartz.
The 3D aluminosilicate anion of synthetic zeolite ZSM-5.
Lunar ferroan anorthosite (plagioclase feldspar) collected by Apollo 16 astronauts from the Lunar Highlands near Descartes Crater
6 units {{chem2|[Si6O18]}}, beryl (red: Si, blue: O)
3 units {{chem2|[Si3O9]}}, benitoite
4 units {{chem2|[Si4O12]}}, papagoite
9 units {{chem2|[Si9O27]}}, eudialyte
6 units, double ring {{chem2|[Si6O15]}}, milarite
Inosilicate, pyroxene family, with 2-periodic single chain {{chem2|(Si2O6)}}, diopside
Inosilicate, clinoamphibole, with 2-periodic double chains {{chem2|(Si4O11)}}, tremolite
Inosilicate, unbranched 3-periodic single chain of wollastonite
Inosilicate with 5-periodic single chain, rhodonite
Inosilicate with cyclic branched 8-periodic chain, pellyite
Phyllosilicate, mica group, muscovite (red: Si, blue: O)
Phyllosilicate, single net of tetrahedra with 4-membered rings, apophyllite-(KF)-apophyllite-(KOH) series
Phyllosilicate, single tetrahedral nets of 6-membered rings, pyrosmalite-(Fe)-pyrosmalite-(Mn) series
Phyllosilicate, single tetrahedral nets of 6-membered rings, zeophyllite
Phyllosilicate, double nets with 4- and 6-membered rings, carletonite

A silicate mineral is generally an ionic compound whose anions consist predominantly of silicon and oxygen atoms.

Integrated circuit

Erasable programmable read-only memory (EPROM) integrated circuits in dual in-line packages. These packages have a transparent window that shows the die inside. The window is used to erase the memory by exposing the chip to ultraviolet light.
Integrated circuit from an EPROM memory microchip showing the memory blocks, the supporting circuitry and the fine silver wires which connect the integrated circuit die to the legs of the packaging
Virtual detail of an integrated circuit through four layers of planarized copper interconnect, down to the polysilicon (pink), wells (greyish), and substrate (green)
Jack Kilby's original hybrid integrated circuit from 1958. This was the first integrated circuit, and was made from germanium.
Robert Noyce invented the first monolithic integrated circuit in 1959. The chip was made from silicon.
A-to-D converter IC in a DIP
The die from an Intel 8742, an 8-bit NMOS microcontroller that includes a CPU running at 12 MHz, 128 bytes of RAM, 2048 bytes of EPROM, and I/O in the same chip
Rendering of a small standard cell with three metal layers (dielectric has been removed). The sand-colored structures are metal interconnect, with the vertical pillars being contacts, typically plugs of tungsten. The reddish structures are polysilicon gates, and the solid at the bottom is the crystalline silicon bulk.
Schematic structure of a CMOS chip, as built in the early 2000s. The graphic shows LDD-MISFET's on an SOI substrate with five metallization layers and solder bump for flip-chip bonding. It also shows the section for FEOL (front-end of line), BEOL (back-end of line) and first parts of back-end process.
A Soviet MSI nMOS chip made in 1977, part of a four-chip calculator set designed in 1970
Upper interconnect layers on an Intel 80486DX2 microprocessor die

An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuits on one small flat piece (or "chip") of semiconductor material, usually silicon.


Any of the various hard, brittle, heat-resistant and corrosion-resistant materials made by shaping and then firing an inorganic, nonmetallic material, such as clay, at a high temperature.

Corded-Ware culture pottery from 2500 BC.
Cutting disks made of silicon carbide
The Meissner effect demonstrated by levitating a magnet above a cuprate superconductor, which is cooled by liquid nitrogen
Silicon nitride rocket thruster. Left: Mounted in test stand. Right: Being tested with H2/O2 propellants
Cermax xenon arc lamp with synthetic sapphire output window
Kitchen knife with a ceramic blade

Some elements, such as carbon or silicon, may be considered ceramics.


MOSFET, showing gate (G), body (B), source (S) and drain (D) terminals. The gate is separated from the body by an insulating layer (pink).
MOSFET transistors in various types of packaging
A cross-section through an nMOSFET when the gate voltage VGS is below the threshold for making a conductive channel; there is little or no conduction between the drain and source terminals; the switch is off. When the gate is more positive, it attracts electrons, inducing an n-type conductive channel in the substrate below the oxide, which allows electrons to flow between the n-doped terminals; the switch is on.
Simulation of formation of inversion channel (electron density) and attainment of threshold vol­tage (IV) in a nanowire MOSFET. Note: threshold voltage for this device lies around 0.45 V
Photomicrograph of two metal-gate MOSFETs in a test pattern. Probe pads for two gates and three source/drain nodes are labeled.
Metal–oxide–semiconductor structure on p-type silicon
Channel formation in nMOS MOSFET shown as band diagram: Top panels: An applied gate voltage bends bands, depleting holes from surface (left). The charge inducing the bending is balanced by a layer of negative acceptor-ion charge (right). Bottom panel: A larger applied voltage further depletes holes but conduction band lowers enough in energy to populate a conducting channel
C–V profile for a bulk MOSFET with different oxide thickness. The leftmost part of the curve corresponds to accumulation. The valley in the middle corresponds to depletion. The curve on the right corresponds to inversion
Source tied to the body to ensure no body bias: subthreshold (top left), ohmic mode (top right), active mode at onset of pinch-off (bottom left), and active mode well into pinch-off (bottom right). Channel length modulation is evident.
Example application of an n-channel MOSFET. When the switch is pushed, the LED lights up.
Band diagram showing body effect. VSB splits Fermi levels Fn for electrons and Fp for holes, requiring larger VGB to populate the conduction band in an nMOS MOSFET
Two power MOSFETs in D2PAK surface-mount packages. Operating as switches, each of these components can sustain a blocking voltage of 120V in the off state, and can conduct a con­ti­nuous current of 30 A in the on state, dissipating up to about 100 W and controlling a load of over 2000 W. A matchstick is pictured for scale.
Cross section of a power MOSFET, with square cells. A typical transistor is constituted of several thousand cells
A FinFET (fin field-effect transistor), a type of multi-gate MOSFET.
MOSFET showing shallow junction extensions, raised source and drain and halo implant. Raised source and drain separated from gate by oxide spacers
Trend of Intel CPU transistor gate length
MOSFET version of gain-boosted current mirror; M1 and M2 are in active mode, while M3 and M4 are in Ohmic mode, and act like resistors. The operational amplifier provides feedback that maintains a high output resistance.

The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor that is fabricated by the controlled oxidation of a semiconductor, typically silicon.


Polymer made up of siloxane .

Silicone caulk can be used as a basic sealant against water and air penetration.
Chemical structure of the silicone polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)
This silicone rubber folding chessboard resists creasing and wrinkling.
Silicone caulks and rubber components are increasingly used in automotive applications.
Silicone is often used to seal maintenance access openings in aerospace equipment.
Silicone rubber keypad
Red-colored silicone firestopping
Silicone grease is often used with laboratory glassware to prevent seizing.
Silicone mold used to reproduce an architectural detail
Silicone rubber earplugs for hearing protection
Baby toys made of nontoxic silicone rubber
Soup ladle and pasta ladle made of silicone
A silicone food steamer to be placed inside a pot of boiling water
Flexible ice cube trays made of silicone allow easy extraction of ice.
Silicone brush used for basting and applying flavoring liquids

Silicone is often confused with silicon, but they are distinct substances.