- What are silicones?
What are silicones?
Silicones are inert synthetic compounds that are designed and formulated for an almost unlimited number of applications, from insulation to materials for molding everything from tires to fine arts, via medical devices and prostheses. To be efficient in these various applications, silicones come in a variety of forms (oils, rubbers, resins, elastomers, etc.).
The basic building blocks of silicones are polyorganosiloxanes, where silicon atoms are linked to oxygen to create the «siloxane» bond. The remaining valences of silicon are linked to other chemicals, such as methyl groups (CH3 - phenyl, vinyl or hydrogen) or carbon. This enables silicones to be specifically produced for different applications. They can be purchased as raw materials or commodity products, known as chlorosilanes, to customers having the ability to transform them in the specific formulations and products they need. For customers looking for ready-to-use formulations, specialty silicones are available off-the-shelf or custom-made, to meet specific applications. Both these product families of silicone polymers, raw materials and formulations for inclusion in processing, are available in different technologies: RTV-1, RTV-2, HCR, LSR, Emulsions, Resins, Greases and Compounds.
These enable manufacturers to produce and cure the products in ways that suits their processes and needs best.
Everything you need to know about silicone technologies.