Silicon carbide (SiC) powder is a powdered form of silicon which is chemically stable and can be made in different sizes to meet specific applications. The SiC is obtained by melting sillica sand in an ultra-high power electric furnace. It has a high thermal conductivity and is resistant to corrosion.
Silicon carbide is widely used in electronics, semiconductors, ceramics, and power switching applications. It is also used in abrasives, coatings, and ceramic wear parts. Compared to corundum, it has a higher mechanical strength. It is also a good heat resistor and is hard to corrode by alkali.
In 1893, Edward Goodrich Acheson invented a method for making silicon carbide powder. He believed that a compound of carbon and corundum could be synthesized. After heating a mixture of powdered coke and aluminum silicate in an iron bowl, he saw blue crystals form. Eventually, he patented the process and formed the Carborundum Company.
In 1900, the Carborundum Company merged with the Electric Smelting and Aluminum Company. Initially, the company manufactured bulk SiC for abrasives, but soon settled on producing bulk SiC for use in electronics.
Silicon carbide can be used to make high-temperature silicon carbide heating elements. By fusing silicon carbide grains together, it is possible to produce hard ceramics with high thermal conductivity. Using this method, SiC devices can be developed for new energy vehicles. These devices can reduce the volume of an electric drive inverter and increase the efficiency of the system.