Energy & Green Tech

Self-standing mesoporous Si film can power lithium-ion batteries

This film electrode does not need carbon additives and binders to connect particles like typical slurry-based electrodes, but it still exhibits excellent battery performance. The success of this electrode design provides ...

Electronics & Semiconductors

Silicon FinFETs hosting hole spin qubits at temperatures over 4 Kelvin

The idea of creating a spin-based quantum computer using quantum dots was first introduced by Daniel Loss and David Di Vincenzo in 1998. Since then, countless engineers and physicists worldwide have been trying to realize ...

Business

Tech billionaires rally around nuclear as energy crisis looms

In recent weeks, some of Silicon Valley's most famous technologists have hailed a historically polarizing energy source—nuclear power—as a solution to both cutting carbon emissions and weaning the world off now-controversial ...

Electronics & Semiconductors

Development of a diamond transistor with high hole mobility

Using a new fabrication technique, NIMS has developed a diamond field-effect transistor (FET) with high hole mobility, which allows reduced conduction loss and higher operational speed. This new FET also exhibits normally ...

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Silicon

Silicon (pronounced /ˈsɪlɨkən/ or /ˈsɪlɨkɒn/, Latin: silicium) is the most common metalloid. It is a chemical element, which has the symbol Si and atomic number 14. The atomic mass is 28.0855. A tetravalent metalloid, silicon is less reactive than its chemical analog carbon. As the eighth most common element in the universe by mass, silicon very rarely occurs as the pure free element in nature, but is more widely distributed in dusts, planetoids and planets as various forms of silicon dioxide (silica) or silicates. On Earth, silicon is the second most abundant element (after oxygen) in the crust, making up 25.7% of the crust by mass.

Silicon has many industrial uses. It is the principal component of most semiconductor devices, most importantly integrated circuits or microchips. Silicon is widely used in semiconductors because it remains a semiconductor at higher temperatures than the semiconductor germanium and because its native oxide is easily grown in a furnace and forms a better semiconductor/dielectric interface than any other material.

In the form of silica and silicates, silicon forms useful glasses, cements, and ceramics. It is also a constituent of silicones, a class-name for various synthetic plastic substances made of silicon, oxygen, carbon and hydrogen, often confused with silicon itself.

Silicon is an essential element in biology, although only tiny traces of it appear to be required by animals. It is much more important to the metabolism of plants, particularly many grasses, and silicic acid (a type of silica) forms the basis of the striking array of protective shells of the microscopic diatoms.

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