Beta silicon carbide is a specialized form of silicon carbide that features a cubic crystalline structure rather than a spherical one. This structure gives beta silicon carbide unique qualities that make it particularly well-suited for certain applications across multiple industries.
What Is Beta Silicon Carbide?
Beta silicon carbide is defined by its cubic microcrystalline structure. The composite is highly sinterable in sub-micron sizes and can be adapted for various uses, but it always retains this distinctive structure and has unique properties because of the structure. The overall structure may be spheroidal and equalaxed, but the underlying microstructure is always cubic.
The cubic microstructure gives beta silicon carbide two unique traits when it’s compared to other forms of silicon carbide. Beta silicon carbide is:
How Does Beta Silicon Carbide Differ From Alpha Silicon Carbide?
Beta silicon carbide is entirely distinct from alpha silicon carbide, and it shouldn’t be confused for one of the 70-something variations of alpha silicon carbide. What distinguishes the two forms of silicon carbide is the microcrystalline structure.
Whereas beta silicon carbide has a cubic microcrystalline structure, alpha crystalline carbide has a spherical microcrystalline structure. Alpha can be further segmented into variants that are more hexagonal or rhombohedral, but these all are variations of a spherical underpinning.
Both beta and alpha silicon carbides retain the quintessential properties of this compound. They both offer electric and heat conduction to an extent, and they both have minimal thermal expansion.
Both also are resistant to high temperatures, although alpha has greater temperature resistance. Alpha silicon carbide is made at temperatures exceeding 2,400°C, whereas beta silicon carbide is normally made in the 1,500 to 1,600°C range. At about 2100°C, beta will convert into alpha.
The different crystalline structure of alpha silicon carbide does give it some different properties than beta, however. Compared to beta silicon carbide, alpha silicon carbide isn’t as dense and doesn’t have the same self-sharpness.
What is Beta Silicon Carbide Used For?
The distinctive density and self-sharpness of beta silicon carbide make it well-suited for applications where friction and/or compactness are needed. There are several relevant applications across a few different industries.
What Is Alpha Silicon Carbide Used For?
While beta silicon carbide is useful in many different applications, alpha silicon carbide still has its distinctive uses. Depending on a product’s specific needs, alpha silicon carbide may be used to make seals, nozzles, sintered wear parts, specialty filters, rough polishings, ceramic armors and mechanical armors.
What Industries Use Beta Silicon Carbide?
As mentioned, beta silicon carbide’s usefulness is relevant to businesses in many different industries. The following are merely a few industries that use beta silicon carbide:
Of course, there are still more industries that use beta silicon carbide for certain products and processes.
Get High-Quality Beta Silicon Carbide
At Superior Graphite, we’ve developed Sinter-Pur Beta Silicon Carbide to be a high-quality beta silicon carbide. Customers use the product in wear parts, seal rings, pump parts, and as additives to metals like chrome, nickel and aluminum.
To ensure the highest quality beta silicon carbide the compound is synthesized in our state-of-the-art fluidized bed graphite furnace. We use both spray-dried and we-attrition milled microgrits and powders, which may be ball-milled or air-milled. Our facility is equipped to produce many different grades of beta silicon carbide, and we’ll have one that’s right for your particular application.
If you need beta silicon carbide for any of the above-mentioned applications, contact us at Superior Graphite. One of our knowledgeable representatives will be happy to answer any questions that you have, and they can help you find the perfect beta silicon carbide for your application.
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