Silicon tetrachloride

Silicon tetrachloride

Chembox new
ImageFileL1 = Silicon tetrachloride.svg|right
ImageFileR1 = Silicon-tetrachloride-3D-vdW.png ImageSizeL1 = 150px
ImageSizeR1 = 150px
IUPACName = Silicon tetrachloride
OtherNames = Tetrachlorosilane, silicon (IV) chloride, silicon chloride, UN 1818
Section1 = Chembox Identifiers
CASNo = 10026-04-7
EINECS = 233-054-0
PubChem = 24816
SMILES = [Si] (Cl)(Cl)(Cl)Cl
InChI = 1/Cl4Si/c1-5(2,3)4

Section2 = Chembox Properties
Formula = SiCl4
MolarMass = 169.90 g/mol
Appearance = Colourless liquid
Density = 1.483 g cm−3
MeltingPt = −68.74 °C
BoilingPt = 57.65 °C
Solubility = decomp.
SolubleOther = Chlorinated solvents
VaporPressure = 25.9 kPa at 20 °C

Section3 = Chembox Structure
CrystalStruct = Tetrahedral
Coordination = 4
MolShape =

Section7 = Chembox Hazards
ExternalMSDS = [ MSDS at Oxford University]
MainHazards = Corrosive (C), Harmful (Xn)
RPhrases = R14 R20 R22 R34 R36/37/38
FlashPt = S7 S8 S26
Autoignition =

Silicon tetrachloride is the chemical compound with the formula SiCl4. It was prepared by Jöns Jakob Berzelius in 1823.


This colourless volatile liquid compound is prepared by the treatment of silicon with chlorine::Si + 2 Cl2 → SiCl4 It reacts readily with water, in contrast with carbon tetrachloride. The differing rates of hydrolysis are attributed to the greater atomic radius of the silicon atom, whereas carbon has a smaller atomic radius so the chlorine atoms effectively shield the carbon from attack. In water, the following reaction occurs::SiCl4 + 2 H2O → SiO2 + 4 HClWith methanol and ethanol it reacts to give tetramethyl orthosilicate and tetraethyl orthosilicate::SiCl4 + 4 ROH → Si(OR)4 + 4 HClAt higher temperatures homologues of silicon tetrachloride can be prepared by the reaction::Si + SiCl4 → Si2Cl6 + homologues


Silicon tetrachloride is sometimes used as an intermediate in the manufacture of extremely pure silicon, since it has a boiling point convenient for purification by repeated fractional distillation; it can be reduced to silicon by hydrogen gas, or hydrolysed to SiO2 as a precursor for extremely pure synthetic fused silica. Very pure silicon is used in large amounts in the semiconductor industry, and also in the production of photovoltaic cells.

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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • silicon — /sil i keuhn, kon /, n. Chem. a nonmetallic element, having amorphous and crystalline forms, occurring in a combined state in minerals and rocks and constituting more than one fourth of the earth s crust: used in steelmaking, alloys, etc. Symbol …   Universalium

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