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Silicones, Silicone-Organic Hybrids and Silanes

A versatile material set tailorable for a vast array of demanding customer applications

Silicon-based materials are available in several forms—gasses, fluids, gums and solids—with properties that are substantially differentiated from organic-based offerings. Silanes and silicones can be easily formulated into curable compositions with unique properties and performance benefits, and they can be modified with organic functionality to tailor features derived from combinations of inorganic and organic character that enable a diverse range of important applications.

The science behind the materials

What makes silanes and silicones distinct is the silicon atom that is abundant in the earth’s crust as sand, also known as quartz. The silicon atom in these materials is typically bonded to a combination of oxygen atoms and a simple organic component primarily derived from methanol. Increasing the silicon-oxygen content makes these materials more “glass-like,” contributing to high thermal stability, durability and a “solid” form, whereas increasing the silicon-organic content makes them more “organic-like,” contributing to their unique surface characteristics, water repellency and a “fluid” form. Silicone properties and forms are defined by the balance of these contributions. Attaching more complex organic groups to these basic structures enables “silicone-organic hybrids,” providing an extraordinary range of properties and societal benefits.

Functions and benefits

Compared to organic-based materials, silicone-based materials typically enable more demanding applications, from those operating at extreme temperatures, to those under harsh environmental conditions for long durations. They are used as additives that provide surfactancy, water repellency, sensorial benefits and much more, making silicone technology a key enabler for a diverse range of applications that enrich our daily lives.

Silicones, Silicone-Organic Hybrids and Silanes

Explore our range of silicones, silicone-organic hybrids and silanes which have enabled thousands of unique products used around the world.

Gels, Encapsulants and Conformal Coatings

For vital protection for electronic components against moisture, dirt, shock, vibration and other harsh environmental factors, look to Dow's lineup of gels and encapsulants.

Waxes, Powders and Gums

In beauty care applications and beyond, formulators seek to achieve new products that meet unmet customer needs for function, feel and aesthetics. Bring on the luxury with our lineup of silicone waxes, powders and gums.