silicate

noun
sil·​i·​cate | \ ˈsi-lə-ˌkāt How to pronounce silicate (audio) , -kət \

Definition of silicate

: a salt or ester derived from a silicic acid especially : any of numerous insoluble often complex metal salts that contain silicon and oxygen in the anion, constitute the largest class of minerals, and are used in building materials (such as cement, bricks, and glass)

Examples of silicate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Take clay, for instance, which forms when chemical weathering reduces aluminum silicate minerals to aluminum and silicon oxides. David Lumb, Popular Mechanics, "109 Ways Silicon Completely Rules Every Part of Your Life," 9 Dec. 2020 Then gas and elements formed into a flat planetary disk around the sun and that included hydrogen, ice, iron and silicates. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Ice fossils found in 4.6 billion-year-old meteorite reveal building blocks of our solar system," 26 Nov. 2019 This colorful chemical, calcium copper silicate, was invented in ancient Egypt and still fascinates researchers today. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "New Tool for Biomedical Research Was Invented in Ancient Egypt," 1 Apr. 2020 Then there's the exoplanet 55 Cancri e, a super-Earth likely to host lava flows on its surface while rain made of silicates falls like glass shards. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "The real-life planets you may have first seen in a 'Star Wars' film," 10 Dec. 2019 But the planets formed by rearranging their ingredients through heat -- metals melted to form the core while silicates created a mantle and crust. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Ice fossils found in 4.6 billion-year-old meteorite reveal building blocks of our solar system," 26 Nov. 2019 That exoplanet, discovered in 2005 orbiting a star 63 light years away, has an atmosphere full of silicates, the materials that are used to make sand and glass. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "NASA Celebrates Halloween With These Interstellar Horror Posters," 31 Oct. 2019 In the past, researchers have suggested that if Saturn's rings were ancient, they would be littered with organic molecules, silicates and other material. Fox News, "Age of Saturn's rings debated as questions about life emerge," 17 Sep. 2019 Such a viewpoint ignores the intrinsic value of lunar resources, Neal said, in the form of water ice at the poles, as well as the lunar soil which can be broken into oxygen, titanium, silicates and more. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "With Artemis, NASA at risk of repeating Apollo mistakes, scientist warns," 20 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'silicate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of silicate

1811, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for silicate

silicic (acid)

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Time Traveler for silicate

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The first known use of silicate was in 1811

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Cite this Entry

“Silicate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/silicate. Accessed 3 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for silicate

silicate

noun

English Language Learners Definition of silicate

: a chemical that contains silicon and that is used in building materials (such as bricks, cement, and glass)

silicate

noun
sil·​i·​cate | \ ˈsil-ə-ˌkāt How to pronounce silicate (audio) , ˈsil-i-kət How to pronounce silicate (audio) \

Medical Definition of silicate

: a salt or ester derived from a silicic acid especially : any of numerous insoluble often complex metal salts that contain silicon and oxygen in the anion and constitute the largest class of minerals

More from Merriam-Webster on silicate

Britannica English: Translation of silicate for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about silicate

Comments on silicate

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