Silicon tetrachloride is a colorless inorganic compound. Silicon tetrachloride is volatile in nature and has a low boiling point. Chemical formula of Silicon tetrachloride is SiCl?. It is a fuming liquid with a pungent odor. Silicon tetrachloride is moisture sensitive and easily decomposes in water in presence of heat into silicic acid and hydrogen chloride. Silicon tetrachloride is also known as tetrachlorosilane. The molecular weight of silicon tetrachloride is 169.90. The structure of silicon tetrachloride is similar to carbon tetrachloride. It is incompatible with water, acids, bases, and alkali metals. The derivatives of Silicon tetrachloride such as trichlorosilane and silane are used in the Siemens process. Silicone tetrachloride is used as surface modifying agents and as intermediate in the synthesis of silicon based products. Silicon tetrachloride can be obtained as a byproduct of polycrystalline silicon.
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Silicon tetrachloride is used in the manufacturing of high purity silicon and silica, which are being used for commercial applications. High purity silicon finds major applications in semiconductors and Photo Voltaic (PV) cells. In the presence of moisture, Silicon tetrachloride is corrosive to metals. Pure Silicon tetrachloride is non-flammable. It is used to synthesize various silicon based chemicals, and also used in chemical analysis. Silicon tetrachloride is also widely used in the production of optical fiber and semiconductors. Silicon tetrachloride is used as a starting material for glass manufacturing which is used in optical fibers. This inorganic silicon substance has been used as laboratory reagents, during the preparation of other silicon based products and in silicon polymers. Global demand for semiconductors is showing a significant growth rate in electronics, communications, and GPS devices manufacturing industries. With advanced data transmission applications and technologies based on fiber optics which uses silicon tetrachloride based glass is likely to drive the demand for silicon tetrachloride market over the forecast period, 2016-2026.
Optical fiber demand is significantly growing across the world which is a key growth driver for global Silicon tetrachloride market. Rise in demand for smartphones, tablets, and emergence of other high tech communication devices also pushes the demand for fiber optics and ultimately Silicon tetrachloride market. Fiber optics is not only used in telecommunications, but also it is spreading wide in other industries such as oil & gas, military, aerospace, etc.
The market for silicon tetrachloride and ultra-pure silicon tetrachloride has high growth rate in China, which results in the expansion of silicon tetrachloride market in the Asia-Pacific region. The consumer electronics and data processing markets are expected to grow over the next few decades. Even demand from industrial segment is also augmented for semiconductor sector. Overall semiconductor market is rising due to capital investments by companies which in turn supports the growth of silicon tetrachloride market. Global solar Photo Voltaic demand is constantly growing, mainly in Asia-Pacific region. Higher growth is expected for solar PV market due to safe and environment friendly features. Government of various countries have also subsidized the solar technology to promote clean and renewable energy as an alternative to conventional resources. Thus global growth in solar PV market will spur the demand for silicon tetrachloride.
High manufacturing and installation cost is associated with fiber optics and solar industry which limits the growth potential of Silicon tetrachloride market. Global recession has adversely impacted the solar PV and semiconductor industry. Many projects have been stalled due to liquidity crunch since solar PV requires high capital investments, affecting the growth potential of Silicon tetrachloride market.
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