History of Silicon Nitride Ceramics
Due to the needs for continuous development of science and technology, scientists have been looking without pausing for the ideal new materials suitable for use under harsh conditions. In an endless stream of new materials, silicon nitride ceramics can be regarded as the fore, very impressive and receiving increasing attention of scientists around the world.
Silicon nitride (Si3N4) is the compound of nitrogen and silicon. In nature, nitrogen and silicon are extremely common elements. Nitrogen is the basis of life, while silicon is the protagonist of the inorganic world. The two elements are ubiquitous in the world where we live, but so far people have not found the presence of the compound of the two elements in nature yet.
Silicon nitride is a compound synthesized in artificial conditions. Although silicon nitride was directly synthesized as early as 140 years ago, it remained in people’s memory only as a stable “refractory” nitride. After World War II, the rapid development of technology urgently requires materials with heat resistance, high hardness, high strength, and corrosion resistance. After long-range efforts, not until 1995 was silicon nitride valued. In the mid-seventies, silicon nitride ceramics with high quality, low cost and a wide range of important applications were really obtained.
Why the development process is so difficult? This is because the performance and functionality between silicon nitride powders and silicon nitride ceramics are quite different. Without a strict and delicate re-processing process of silicon nitride powder, silicon nitride ceramics with excellent performance cannot be obtained. Without silicon nitride ceramics, silicon nitride would not have such en important position today.