Unworked mas of silicon carbide (carborundum) crystals.
4 0 c m
actual image size: 23cm x 32cm

Unworked mas of silicon carbide (carborundum) crystals.

© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library


Silicon carbide (SiC) is held together by bonds resembling those which hold a diamond together, so that it forms a giant molecule in which every atom is directly linked to four other atoms disposed tetrahedrally around it. These links are very hard to break, so silicon carbide, like diamond, is a very hard substance. It is often used as an abrasive.

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