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Definition of "silicon" []

  • A nonmetallic element occurring extensively in the earth's crust in silica and silicates, having both an amorphous and a crystalline allotrope, and used doped or in combination with other materials in glass, semiconducting devices, concrete, brick, refractories, pottery, and silicones. Atomic number 14; atomic weight 28.086; melting point 1,410°C; boiling point 2,355°C; specific gravity 2.33; valence 4. See Table at element. (noun)
  • A brittle metalloid element that exists in two allotropic forms; occurs principally in sand, quartz, granite, feldspar, and clay. It is usually a grey crystalline solid but is also found as a brown amorphous powder. It is used in transistors, rectifiers, solar cells, and alloys. Its compounds are widely used in glass manufacture, the building industry, and in the form of silicones. Symbol: Si; atomic no: 14; atomic wt: 28.0855; valency: 4; relative density: 2.33; melting pt: 1414°C; boiling pt: 3267°C (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • Denoting an area of a country that contains a density of high-technology industry (noun)

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Use "silicon" in a sentence
  • "By the addition of a small quantity of silicon the tensile strength of copper is much increased; a sample of such _silicon bronze_, used for telegraph wires, on analysis was found to consist of 99. 94\% of copper, 0. 03\% of tin, and traces of iron and silicon."
  • "The name silicon comes from the Latin word silicis which means flint."
  • "Where the silicon junctions come to the surface of the silicon is a very sensitive area, which we used to expose and had to work awfully hard to keep clean."