27-Jan-2021 | Market Research Store

Researchers from Curtin University have discovered a new way of developing silicon. This material is commonly used in electronics such as cameras,phones, and computers. Traditionally, silicon are made at room temperature but the latest method used high temperature (heat) generated using electrical currents to trigger the necessary chemical reaction that can turn silica into silicon without any extra cost and zero impact on the environment. According to lead researcher Song Zhang from Curtin's School of Molecular and Life Sciences, the team made silicon at a nanoscale by replacing the thermochemical processes with electrochemical processes which can be effectively converted into clean electricity.

Making silicon and using it in tech devices is a very crucial task as they are majorly used as a semi-conductor in the computer and microelectronic industries. However, the manufacturing of silicon is a tedious and expensive fair. Furthermore, silica — which is the natural oxide of silicon — melts at 1,700 ºC such that the oxygen atoms jiggle to the extent of detaching from the silica and formingthe silicon metal. The study shows that even without extreme temperatures the conversion is possible. The electrochemical reactions helped in transforming clean electricity into chemical energy for easier stripping of oxygen from silica.

The researchers proved the efficiency of the newly developed silicon by immersing it in a water electrolyte followed by removal of electrons to develop thin layered silica prior to the bombarding of electrons to change into nanoscale islands of silicon. The latest small scale development is exciting and thus, there are hopes of it commercializing into a large scale production. The idea of reversibly converting silica to silicon at room temperature is not only feasible but also rapid. The new method of generation of silicon permits its immediate use. It is thus believed that this technique will help form silicon from silica in practical amounts.