Share this entry

Share this page

silicon

Syllabification: sil·i·con
Pronunciation: /ˈsilikən
 
, ˈsiləˌkän
 
/

Definition of silicon in English:

noun

The chemical element of atomic number 14, a nonmetal with semiconducting properties, used in making electronic circuits. Pure silicon exists in a shiny dark gray crystalline form and as an amorphous powder. (Symbol: Si)
Example sentences
  • As silicon doesn't conduct electricity, impurities are added so it becomes a conductor.
  • Silicosis is caused when silicon, fine particles of rock, enters the lungs and cuts lung tissue.
  • The most common technology for harvesting energy from sunlight is the photovoltaic cell based on silicon.

Origin

early 19th century: alteration of earlier silicium, from Latin silex, silic- 'flint', on the pattern of carbon and boron.

Words that rhyme with silicon

basilican, Millikan

Definition of silicon in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day resilient
Pronunciation: rɪˈzɪlɪənt
adjective
able to recoil or spring back into shape…