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Sodium silicate

"E550" redirects here. For the Italian locomotive, see FS Class E550.

Sodium silicate is a generic name for chemical compounds with the formulaNa
2x
Si
y
O
2y+x
or(Na
2
O)
x
·(SiO
2
)
y
, such as sodium metasilicateNa
2
SiO
3
, sodium orthosilicateNa
4
SiO
4
, and sodium pyrosilicateNa
6
Si
2
O
7
. The anions are often polymeric. These compounds are generally colorless transparent solids or white powders, and soluble in water in various amounts.

Sodium silicate is also the technical and common name for a mixture of such compounds, chiefly the metasilicate, also called waterglass, water glass, or liquid glass. The product has a wide variety of uses, including the formulation of cements, passive fire protection, textile and lumber processing, manufacture of refractory ceramics, as adhesives, and in the production of silica gel. The commercial product, available in water solution or in solid form, is often greenish or blue owing to the presence of iron-containing impurities.

In industry, the various grades of sodium silicate are characterized by their SiO2:Na2O weight ratio (which can be converted to molar ratio by multiplication with 1.032). The ratio can vary between 1:2 and 3.75:1. Grades with ratio below 2.85:1 are termed alkaline. Those with a higher SiO2:Na2O ratio are described as neutral.

Contents

Soluble silicates of alkali metals (sodium or potassium) were observed by European alchemists already in the 1500s. Giambattista della Porta observed in 1567 that tartari salis (cream of tartar, potassium hydrogen tartrate) caused powdered crystallum (quartz) to melt at a lower temperature. Other possible early references to alkali silicates were made by Basil Valentine in 1520, and by Agricola in 1550. Around 1640, Jean Baptist van Helmont reported the formation of alkali silicates as a soluble substance made by melting sand with excess alkali, and observed that the silica could be precipitated quantitatively by adding acid to the solution.

In 1646, Glauber made potassium silicate, that he termed liquor silicum by melting potassium carbonate (obtained by calcinating cream of tartar) and sand in a crucible, and keeping it molten until it ceased to bubble (due to the release of carbon dioxide). The mixture was allowed to cool and then was ground to a fine powder. When the powder was exposed to moist air, it gradually formed a viscous liquid, which Glauber called "Oleum oder Liquor Silicum, Arenæ, vel Crystallorum" (i.e., oil or solution of silica, sand or quartz crystal).

However, it was later claimed that the substances prepared by those alchemists were not waterglass as it is understood today. That would have been prepared in 1818 by Johann Nepomuk von Fuchs, by treating silicic acid with an alkali; the result being soluble in water, "but not affected by atmospheric changes".

The terms "water glass" and "soluble glass" were used by Leopold Wolff in 1846, by Émile Kopp in 1857, and by Hermann Krätzer in 1887.

In 1892, Rudolf Von Wagner distinguished soda, potash, double (soda and potash), and fixing (i.e., stabilizing) as types of water glass. The fixing type was "a mixture of silica well saturated with potash water glass and a sodium silicate" used to stabilize inorganic water color pigments on cement work for outdoor signs and murals.

Sodium silicates are colorless glassy or crystalline solids, or white powders. Except for the most silicon-rich ones, they are readily soluble in water, producing alkaline solutions.

Sodium silicates are stable in neutral and alkaline solutions. In acidic solutions, the silicate ions react with hydrogen ions to form silicic acids, which tend to decompose into hydrated silicon dioxide gel. Heated to drive off the water, the result is a hard translucent substance called silica gel, widely used as a desiccant. It can withstand temperatures up to 1100 °C.

Solutions of sodium silicates can be produced by treating a mixture of silica (usually as quartz sand), caustic soda, and water, with hot steam in a reactor. The overall reaction is

2x NaOH +SiO
2
(Na
2
O)
x
·SiO
2
+ xH
2
O

Sodium silicates can also be obtained by dissolving silicaSiO
2
(whose melting point is 1713 °C) in molten sodium carbonate (that melts with decomposition at 851 °C):

xNa
2
CO
3
+SiO
2
(Na
2
O)
x
·SiO
2
+CO
2

The material can be obtained also from sodium sulfate (melting point 884 °C) with carbon as a reducing agent:

2xNa
2
SO
4
+ C + 2SiO
2
→ 2(Na
2
O)
x
·SiO
2
+ 2SO
2
+CO
2

In 1990, 4 million tons of alkali metal silicates were produced.

The main applications of sodium silicates are in detergents, paper, water treatment, and construction materials.

Engineering

Adhesive

The largest application of sodium silicate solutions is a cement for producing cardboard. When used as a paper cement, the tendency is for the sodium silicate joint eventually to crack within a few years, at which point it no longer holds the paper surfaces cemented together.

Sodium silicate solutions can also be used as a spin-on adhesive layer to bond glass to glass or silicon oxide covered silicon wafers to one another. Sodium silicate glass-to-glass bonding has the advantage that it is a low temperature bonding technique, as opposed to fusion bonding. It is also less processing intensive than glass-to-glass anodic bonding, which requires an intermediate layer such as SiN to act as a diffusion barrier for sodium ions. Deposition of such a layer requires a low pressure chemical vapor deposition step. A disadvantage of sodium silicate bonding, however, is that it is very difficult to eliminate air bubbles. This is due in part because this bonding technique doesn't require bonding in vacuum and it also doesn't use field assistance like in anodic bonding. Though this lack of field assistance can sometimes be beneficial, because field assistance can provide such high attraction between wafers as to bend a thinner wafer and collapse onto the nanofluidic cavity or MEMS elements.

Drilling fluids

Sodium silicate is frequently used in drilling fluids to stabilize borehole walls and to avoid the collapse of bore walls. It is particularly useful when drill holes pass through argillaceous formations containing swelling clay minerals such as smectite or montmorillonite.

Concrete and general masonry treatment

Concrete treated with a sodium silicate solution helps to reduce porosity in most masonry products such as concrete, stucco, and plasters. This effect aids in reducing water penetration, but has no known effect on reducing water vapor transmission and emission. A chemical reaction occurs with the excess Ca(OH)2 (portlandite) present in the concrete that permanently binds the silicates with the surface, making them far more durable and water repellent. This treatment generally is applied only after the initial cure has taken place (7 days or so depending on conditions). These coatings are known as silicate mineral paint. An example of the reaction of sodium silicate with the calcium hydroxide found in concrete to form calcium silicate hydrate (or C-S-H) gel, the main product in hydrated Portland cement, follows.

Na
2
SiO
3
+y H
2
O
+x Ca(OH)
2
x CaO.SiO
2
.y H
2
O
+2NaOH

Detergent auxiliaries

It is used in detergent auxiliaries such as complex sodium disilicate and modified sodium disilicate. The detergent granules gain their ruggedness from a coating of silicates.

Water treatment

Sodium silicate is used as an alum coagulant and an iron flocculant in wastewater treatment plants. Sodium silicate binds to colloidal molecules, creating larger aggregates that sink to the bottom of the water column. The microscopic negatively charged particles suspended in water interact with sodium silicate. Their electrical double layer collapses due to the increase of ionic strength caused by the addition of sodium silicate (doubly negatively charged anion accompanied by two sodium cations) and they subsequently aggregate. This process is called coagulation.

Refractory use

Water glass is a useful binder of solids, such as vermiculite and perlite. When blended with the aforementioned lightweight aggregates, water glass can be used to make hard, high-temperature insulation boards used for refractories, passive fire protection and high temperature insulations, such as moulded pipe insulation applications. When mixed with finely divided mineral powders, such as vermiculite dust (which is common scrap from the exfoliation process), one can produce high temperature adhesives. The intumescence disappears in the presence of finely divided mineral dust, whereby the waterglass becomes a mere matrix. Waterglass is inexpensive and abundantly available, which makes its use popular in many refractory applications.

Sand casting

It is used as a binder of the sand when doing sand casting of iron or steel. It allows the rapid production of a strong mold, by passing CO2 through the mixture of sand and sodium silicate in the mold box, which hardens it almost instantly.

Dye auxiliary

Sodium silicate solution is used as a fixative for hand dyeing with reactive dyes that require a high pH to react with the textile fiber. After the dye is applied to a cellulose-based fabric, such as cotton or rayon, or onto silk, it is allowed to dry, after which the sodium silicate is painted on to the dyed fabric, covered with plastic to retain moisture, and left to react for an hour at room temperature.

Passive fire protection

Expantrol proprietary sodium silicate suspended in about a 6.5-mm-thick layer of red rubber, type 3M FS195, inserted into a metal pipe, then heated, to demonstrate hard char intumescence, strong enough to shut a melting plastic pipe
Palusol-based intumescent plastic pipe device used for commercial firestopping

Sodium silicates are inherently intumescent. They come in prill (solid beads) form, as well as the liquid, water glass. The solid sheet form (Palusol) must be waterproofed to ensure long-term passive fire protection (PFP).

Standard, solid, bead-form sodium silicates have been used as aggregate within silicone rubber to manufacture plastic pipe firestop devices. The silicone rubber was insufficient waterproofing to preserve the intumescing function and the products had to be recalled, which is problematic for firestops concealed behind drywall in buildings.

Pastes for caulking purposes are similarly unstable. This, too, has resulted in recalls and even litigation. Only 3M's "Expantrol" version, which has an external heat treatment that helps to seal the outer surface, as part of its process standard, has achieved sufficient longevity to qualify for DIBt approvals in the US for use in firestopping.

Not unlike other intumescents, sodium silicate, both in bead form and in liquid form, are inherently endothermic, due to liquid water in the water glass and hydrates in the prill form. The absence in the US of mandatory aging tests, whereby PFP systems are made to undergo system performance tests after the aging and humidity exposures, are at the root of the continued availability, in North America, of PFP products that can become inoperable within weeks of installation. Indiscriminate use of sodium silicates without proper waterproofing measures are contributors to the problems and risk. When sodium silicates are adequately protected, they function extremely well and reliably for long periods. Evidence of this can be seen in the many DIBt approvals for plastic pipe firestop devices using Palusol (a product of BASF), which use waterproofed sodium silicate sheets.

Metal repair

Sodium silicate is used, along with magnesium silicate, in muffler repair and fitting paste. When dissolved in water, both sodium silicate and magnesium silicate form a thick paste that is easy to apply. When the exhaust system of an internal combustion engine heats up to its operating temperature, the heat drives out all of the excess water from the paste. The silicate compounds that are left over have glass-like properties, making a temporary, brittle repair.

Automotive repair

Sodium silicate is also used currently as an exhaust system joint and crack sealer for repairing mufflers, resonators, tailpipes, and other exhaust components, with and without fiberglass reinforcing tapes. In this application, the sodium silicate (60–70%) is typically mixed with kaolin (40-30%), an aluminium silicate mineral, to make the sodium silicate "glued" joint opaque. The sodium silicate, however, is the high-temperature adhesive; the kaolin serves simply as a compatible high-temperature coloring agent. Some of these repair compounds also contain glass fibres to enhance their gap-filling abilities and reduce brittleness.

Sodium silicate can be used to fill gaps within the head gasket. Commonly used on aluminum alloy cylinder heads, which are sensitive to thermally induced surface deflection. This can be caused by many things including head-bolt stretching, deficient coolant delivery, high cylinder head pressure, overheating, etc.

"Liquid glass" (sodium silicate) is added to the system through the radiator, and allowed to circulate. Sodium silicate is suspended in the coolant until it reaches the cylinder head. At 100–105 °C (212-221 °F), sodium silicate loses water molecules to form a glass seal with a remelt temperature above 810 °C (1,490 °F).

A sodium silicate repair can last two years or longer. The repair occurs rapidly, and symptoms disappear instantly. This repair works only when the sodium silicate reaches its "conversion" temperature at 100–105 °C. Contamination of engine oil is a serious possibility in situations in which a coolant-to-oil leak is present. Sodium silicate (glass particulate) contamination of lubricants is detrimental to their function.

Sodium silicate solution is used to inexpensively, quickly, and permanently disable automobile engines. Running an engine with about 2 liters of a sodium silicate solution instead of motor oil causes the solution to precipitate, catastrophically damaging the engine's bearings and pistons within a few minutes. In the United States, this procedure was used to comply with requirements of the Car Allowance Rebate System (CARS) program.

Safe construction

A mixture of sodium silicate and sawdust has been used in between the double skin of certain safes. This not only makes them more fire resistant, but also makes cutting them open with an oxyacetylene torch extremely difficult due to the smoke emitted.

Crystal gardens

When crystals of a number of metallic salts are dropped into a solution of water glass, simple or branching stalagmites of coloured metal silicates are formed. This phenomenon has been used by manufacturers of toys and chemistry sets to provide instructive enjoyment to many generations of children from the early 20th century until the present. An early mention of crystals of metallic salts forming a "chemical garden" in sodium silicate is found in the 1946 Modern Mechanix magazine. Metal salts used included the sulfates and/or chlorides of copper, cobalt, iron, nickel, and manganese.

Pottery

Sodium silicate is used as a deflocculant in casting slips helping reduce viscosity and the need for large amounts of water to liquidize the clay body. It is also used to create a crackle effect in pottery, usually wheel-thrown. A vase or bottle is thrown on the wheel, fairly narrow and with thick walls. Sodium silicate is brushed on a section of the piece. After 5 minutes, the wall of the piece is stretched outward with a rib or hand. The result is a wrinkled or cracked look.

It is also the main agent in "magic water", which is used when joining clay pieces, especially if the moisture level of the two differs.

Sealing of leaking water-containing structures

Sodium silicate with additives was injected into the ground to harden it and thereby to prevent further leakage of highly radioactive water from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan in April, 2011. The residual heat carried by the water used for cooling the damaged reactors accelerated the setting of the injected mixture.

On June 3, 1958, the USS Nautilus, the world's first nuclear submarine, visited Everett and Seattle. In Seattle, crewmen dressed in civilian clothing were sent in to secretly buy 140 quarts (160 liter) of an automotive product containing sodium silicate (originally identified as Stop Leak) to repair a leaking condenser system. The Nautilus was en route to the North Pole on a top secret mission to cross the North Pole submerged.

Firearm cartridges

A historical use of the adhesive properties of sodium silicates is the production of paper cartridges for black powder revolvers produced by Colt's Manufacturing Company during the period from 1851 until 1873, especially during the American Civil War. Sodium silicate was used to seal combustible nitrated paper together to form a conical paper cartridge to hold the black powder, as well as to cement the lead ball or conical bullet into the open end of the paper cartridge. Such sodium silicate cemented paper cartridges were inserted into the cylinders of revolvers, thereby speeding the reloading of cap-and-ball black powder revolvers. This use largely ended with the introduction of Colt revolvers employing brass-cased cartridges starting in 1873. Similarly, sodium silicate was also used to cement the top wad into brass shotgun shells, thereby eliminating any need for a crimp at the top of the brass shotgun shell to hold a shotgun shell together. Reloading brass shotgun shells was widely practiced by self-reliant American farmers during the 1870s, using the same waterglass material that was also used to preserve eggs. The cementing of the top wad on a shotgun shell consisted of applying from three to five drops of waterglass on the top wad to secure it to the brass hull. Brass hulls for shotgun shells were superseded by paper hulls starting around 1877. The newer paper-hulled shotgun shells used a roll crimp in place of a waterglass-cemented joint to hold the top wad in the shell. However, whereas brass shotshells with top wads cemented with waterglass could be reloaded nearly indefinitely (given powder, wad, and shot, of course), the paper hulls that replaced the brass hulls could be reloaded only a few times.

Food and medicine

While not actually a medical use, sodium silicate, and other silicates, are the primary components in "instant" wrinkle remover creams, which temporarily tighten the skin to minimize the appearance of wrinkles & under-eye bags. These creams, when applied as a thin film and allowed to dry for a few minutes, can present dramatic results. This effect is not permanent, lasting from a few minutes up to a couple of hours. It works like water cement, once the muscle starts to move, it cracks and leaves white residues on the skin.

Food preservation

World War I poster suggesting the use of waterglass to preserve eggs (lower right).

Waterglass has been used as an egg preservative with large success, primarily when refrigeration is not available. Fresh-laid eggs are immersed in a solution of sodium silicate (waterglass). After being immersed in the solution they were removed and allowed to dry. A permanent air tight coating remains on the eggs. If they are then stored in appropriate environment, the majority of bacteria which would otherwise cause them to spoil are kept out and their moisture is kept in. According to the cited source, treated eggs can be kept fresh using this method for up to five months. When boiling eggs so preserved, the shell is no longer permeable to air, and the egg will tend to crack unless a hole in the shell is made (e.g. with a pin) in order to allow steam to escape.

Homebrewing

Sodium silicate flocculant properties are also used to clarify wine and beer by precipitating colloidal particles. As a clearing agent, though, sodium silicate is sometimes confused with isinglass which is prepared from collagen extracted from the dried swim bladders of sturgeon and other fishes. Eggs preserved in a bucket of waterglass gel, and their shells are sometimes also used (baked and crushed) to clear wine.

Aquaculture

Sodium silicate gel is also used as a substrate for algal growth in aquaculture hatcheries.

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Sodium silicate
Sodium silicate Language Watch Edit E550 redirects here For the Italian locomotive see FS Class E550 Sodium silicate is a generic name for chemical compounds with the formula Na2x Siy O2y x or Na2 O x SiO2 y such as sodium metasilicate Na2 SiO3 sodium orthosilicate Na4 SiO4 and sodium pyrosilicate Na6 Si2 O7 The anions are often polymeric These compounds are generally colorless transparent solids or white powders and soluble in water in various amounts Sodium silicate is also the technical and common name for a mixture of such compounds chiefly the metasilicate also called waterglass water glass or liquid glass The product has a wide variety of uses including the formulation of cements passive fire protection textile and lumber processing manufacture of refractory ceramics as adhesives and in the production of silica gel The commercial product available in water solution or in solid form is often greenish or blue owing to the presence of iron containing impurities In industry the various grades of sodium silicate are characterized by their SiO2 Na2O weight ratio which can be converted to molar ratio by multiplication with 1 032 The ratio can vary between 1 2 and 3 75 1 1 Grades with ratio below 2 85 1 are termed alkaline Those with a higher SiO2 Na2O ratio are described as neutral Contents 1 History 2 Properties 3 Production 4 Uses 4 1 Engineering 4 1 1 Adhesive 4 1 2 Drilling fluids 4 1 3 Concrete and general masonry treatment 4 1 4 Detergent auxiliaries 4 1 5 Water treatment 4 1 6 Refractory use 4 1 7 Sand casting 4 1 8 Dye auxiliary 4 1 9 Passive fire protection 4 1 10 Metal repair 4 1 11 Automotive repair 4 1 12 Safe construction 4 1 13 Crystal gardens 4 1 14 Pottery 4 1 15 Sealing of leaking water containing structures 4 1 16 Firearm cartridges 4 2 Food and medicine 4 2 1 Food preservation 4 2 2 Homebrewing 4 2 3 Aquaculture 5 See also 6 References 7 Further reading 8 External linksHistory EditSoluble silicates of alkali metals sodium or potassium were observed by European alchemists already in the 1500s Giambattista della Porta observed in 1567 that tartari salis cream of tartar potassium hydrogen tartrate caused powdered crystallum quartz to melt at a lower temperature 2 Other possible early references to alkali silicates were made by Basil Valentine in 1520 3 and by Agricola in 1550 Around 1640 Jean Baptist van Helmont reported the formation of alkali silicates as a soluble substance made by melting sand with excess alkali and observed that the silica could be precipitated quantitatively by adding acid to the solution 4 In 1646 Glauber made potassium silicate that he termed liquor silicum by melting potassium carbonate obtained by calcinating cream of tartar and sand in a crucible and keeping it molten until it ceased to bubble due to the release of carbon dioxide The mixture was allowed to cool and then was ground to a fine powder When the powder was exposed to moist air it gradually formed a viscous liquid which Glauber called Oleum oder Liquor Silicum Arenae vel Crystallorum i e oil or solution of silica sand or quartz crystal 5 6 However it was later claimed that the substances prepared by those alchemists were not waterglass as it is understood today 7 8 9 That would have been prepared in 1818 by Johann Nepomuk von Fuchs by treating silicic acid with an alkali the result being soluble in water but not affected by atmospheric changes 10 11 The terms water glass and soluble glass were used by Leopold Wolff in 1846 12 by Emile Kopp in 1857 13 and by Hermann Kratzer in 1887 14 In 1892 Rudolf Von Wagner distinguished soda potash double soda and potash and fixing i e stabilizing as types of water glass The fixing type was a mixture of silica well saturated with potash water glass and a sodium silicate used to stabilize inorganic water color pigments on cement work for outdoor signs and murals 15 16 17 18 Properties EditSodium silicates are colorless glassy or crystalline solids or white powders Except for the most silicon rich ones they are readily soluble in water producing alkaline solutions Sodium silicates are stable in neutral and alkaline solutions In acidic solutions the silicate ions react with hydrogen ions to form silicic acids which tend to decompose into hydrated silicon dioxide gel 19 Heated to drive off the water the result is a hard translucent substance called silica gel widely used as a desiccant It can withstand temperatures up to 1100 C Production EditSolutions of sodium silicates can be produced by treating a mixture of silica usually as quartz sand caustic soda and water with hot steam in a reactor The overall reaction is 2x NaOH SiO2 Na2 O x SiO2 x H2 O Sodium silicates can also be obtained by dissolving silica SiO2 whose melting point is 1713 C in molten sodium carbonate that melts with decomposition at 851 C 20 x Na2 CO3 SiO2 Na2 O x SiO2 CO2 The material can be obtained also from sodium sulfate melting point 884 C with carbon as a reducing agent 2x Na2 SO4 C 2 SiO2 2 Na2 O x SiO2 2 SO2 CO2 In 1990 4 million tons of alkali metal silicates were produced 1 Uses EditThe main applications of sodium silicates are in detergents paper water treatment and construction materials 1 Engineering Edit Adhesive Edit The largest application of sodium silicate solutions is a cement for producing cardboard 1 When used as a paper cement the tendency is for the sodium silicate joint eventually to crack within a few years at which point it no longer holds the paper surfaces cemented together Sodium silicate solutions can also be used as a spin on adhesive layer to bond glass to glass 21 or silicon oxide covered silicon wafers to one another 22 Sodium silicate glass to glass bonding has the advantage that it is a low temperature bonding technique as opposed to fusion bonding 21 It is also less processing intensive than glass to glass anodic bonding 23 which requires an intermediate layer such as SiN to act as a diffusion barrier for sodium ions 23 Deposition of such a layer requires a low pressure chemical vapor deposition step 23 A disadvantage of sodium silicate bonding however is that it is very difficult to eliminate air bubbles 22 This is due in part because this bonding technique doesn t require bonding in vacuum and it also doesn t use field assistance like in anodic bonding 24 Though this lack of field assistance can sometimes be beneficial because field assistance can provide such high attraction between wafers as to bend a thinner wafer and collapse 24 onto the nanofluidic cavity or MEMS elements Drilling fluids Edit Sodium silicate is frequently used in drilling fluids to stabilize borehole walls and to avoid the collapse of bore walls It is particularly useful when drill holes pass through argillaceous formations containing swelling clay minerals such as smectite or montmorillonite Concrete and general masonry treatment Edit Concrete treated with a sodium silicate solution helps to reduce porosity in most masonry products such as concrete stucco and plasters This effect aids in reducing water penetration but has no known effect on reducing water vapor transmission and emission 25 A chemical reaction occurs with the excess Ca OH 2 portlandite present in the concrete that permanently binds the silicates with the surface making them far more durable and water repellent This treatment generally is applied only after the initial cure has taken place 7 days or so depending on conditions These coatings are known as silicate mineral paint An example of the reaction of sodium silicate with the calcium hydroxide found in concrete to form calcium silicate hydrate or C S H gel the main product in hydrated Portland cement follows 26 Na2 SiO3 y H2 O x Ca OH 2 x CaO SiO2 y H2 O 2NaOHDetergent auxiliaries Edit It is used in detergent auxiliaries such as complex sodium disilicate and modified sodium disilicate The detergent granules gain their ruggedness from a coating of silicates 1 Water treatment Edit Sodium silicate is used as an alum coagulant and an iron flocculant in wastewater treatment plants Sodium silicate binds to colloidal molecules creating larger aggregates that sink to the bottom of the water column The microscopic negatively charged particles suspended in water interact with sodium silicate Their electrical double layer collapses due to the increase of ionic strength caused by the addition of sodium silicate doubly negatively charged anion accompanied by two sodium cations and they subsequently aggregate This process is called coagulation 1 Refractory use Edit Water glass is a useful binder of solids such as vermiculite and perlite When blended with the aforementioned lightweight aggregates water glass can be used to make hard high temperature insulation boards used for refractories passive fire protection and high temperature insulations such as moulded pipe insulation applications When mixed with finely divided mineral powders such as vermiculite dust which is common scrap from the exfoliation process one can produce high temperature adhesives The intumescence disappears in the presence of finely divided mineral dust whereby the waterglass becomes a mere matrix Waterglass is inexpensive and abundantly available which makes its use popular in many refractory applications Sand casting Edit It is used as a binder of the sand when doing sand casting of iron or steel It allows the rapid production of a strong mold by passing CO2 through the mixture of sand and sodium silicate in the mold box which hardens it almost instantly Dye auxiliary Edit Sodium silicate solution is used as a fixative for hand dyeing with reactive dyes that require a high pH to react with the textile fiber After the dye is applied to a cellulose based fabric such as cotton or rayon or onto silk it is allowed to dry after which the sodium silicate is painted on to the dyed fabric covered with plastic to retain moisture and left to react for an hour at room temperature 27 Passive fire protection Edit Expantrol proprietary sodium silicate suspended in about a 6 5 mm thick layer of red rubber type 3M FS195 inserted into a metal pipe then heated to demonstrate hard char intumescence strong enough to shut a melting plastic pipe Palusol based intumescent plastic pipe device used for commercial firestopping Sodium silicates are inherently intumescent They come in prill solid beads form as well as the liquid water glass The solid sheet form Palusol must be waterproofed to ensure long term passive fire protection PFP Standard solid bead form sodium silicates have been used as aggregate within silicone rubber to manufacture plastic pipe firestop devices The silicone rubber was insufficient waterproofing to preserve the intumescing function and the products had to be recalled which is problematic for firestops concealed behind drywall in buildings Pastes for caulking purposes are similarly unstable This too has resulted in recalls and even litigation Only 3M s Expantrol version which has an external heat treatment that helps to seal the outer surface as part of its process standard has achieved sufficient longevity to qualify for DIBt approvals in the US for use in firestopping Not unlike other intumescents sodium silicate both in bead form and in liquid form are inherently endothermic due to liquid water in the water glass and hydrates in the prill form The absence in the US of mandatory aging tests whereby PFP systems are made to undergo system performance tests after the aging and humidity exposures are at the root of the continued availability in North America of PFP products that can become inoperable within weeks of installation Indiscriminate use of sodium silicates without proper waterproofing measures are contributors to the problems and risk When sodium silicates are adequately protected they function extremely well and reliably for long periods Evidence of this can be seen in the many DIBt approvals for plastic pipe firestop devices using Palusol a product of BASF which use waterproofed sodium silicate sheets Metal repair Edit Sodium silicate is used along with magnesium silicate in muffler repair and fitting paste When dissolved in water both sodium silicate and magnesium silicate form a thick paste that is easy to apply When the exhaust system of an internal combustion engine heats up to its operating temperature the heat drives out all of the excess water from the paste The silicate compounds that are left over have glass like properties making a temporary brittle repair Automotive repair Edit Sodium silicate is also used currently as an exhaust system joint and crack sealer for repairing mufflers resonators tailpipes and other exhaust components with and without fiberglass reinforcing tapes In this application the sodium silicate 60 70 is typically mixed with kaolin 40 30 an aluminium silicate mineral to make the sodium silicate glued joint opaque The sodium silicate however is the high temperature adhesive the kaolin serves simply as a compatible high temperature coloring agent Some of these repair compounds also contain glass fibres to enhance their gap filling abilities and reduce brittleness Sodium silicate can be used to fill gaps within the head gasket Commonly used on aluminum alloy cylinder heads which are sensitive to thermally induced surface deflection This can be caused by many things including head bolt stretching deficient coolant delivery high cylinder head pressure overheating etc Liquid glass sodium silicate is added to the system through the radiator and allowed to circulate Sodium silicate is suspended in the coolant until it reaches the cylinder head At 100 105 C 212 221 F sodium silicate loses water molecules to form a glass seal with a remelt temperature above 810 C 1 490 F A sodium silicate repair can last two years or longer The repair occurs rapidly and symptoms disappear instantly This repair works only when the sodium silicate reaches its conversion temperature at 100 105 C Contamination of engine oil is a serious possibility in situations in which a coolant to oil leak is present Sodium silicate glass particulate contamination of lubricants is detrimental to their function Sodium silicate solution is used to inexpensively quickly and permanently disable automobile engines Running an engine with about 2 liters of a sodium silicate solution instead of motor oil causes the solution to precipitate catastrophically damaging the engine s bearings and pistons within a few minutes 28 In the United States this procedure was used to comply with requirements of the Car Allowance Rebate System CARS program 28 29 Safe construction Edit A mixture of sodium silicate and sawdust has been used in between the double skin of certain safes This not only makes them more fire resistant but also makes cutting them open with an oxyacetylene torch extremely difficult due to the smoke emitted Crystal gardens Edit When crystals of a number of metallic salts are dropped into a solution of water glass simple or branching stalagmites of coloured metal silicates are formed This phenomenon has been used by manufacturers of toys and chemistry sets to provide instructive enjoyment to many generations of children from the early 20th century until the present An early mention of crystals of metallic salts forming a chemical garden in sodium silicate is found in the 1946 Modern Mechanix magazine 30 Metal salts used included the sulfates and or chlorides of copper cobalt iron nickel and manganese Pottery Edit Sodium silicate is used as a deflocculant in casting slips helping reduce viscosity and the need for large amounts of water to liquidize the clay body It is also used to create a crackle effect in pottery usually wheel thrown A vase or bottle is thrown on the wheel fairly narrow and with thick walls Sodium silicate is brushed on a section of the piece After 5 minutes the wall of the piece is stretched outward with a rib or hand The result is a wrinkled or cracked look It is also the main agent in magic water which is used when joining clay pieces especially if the moisture level of the two differs 31 Sealing of leaking water containing structures Edit Sodium silicate with additives was injected into the ground to harden it and thereby to prevent further leakage of highly radioactive water from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan in April 2011 32 The residual heat carried by the water used for cooling the damaged reactors accelerated the setting of the injected mixture On June 3 1958 the USS Nautilus the world s first nuclear submarine visited Everett and Seattle In Seattle crewmen dressed in civilian clothing were sent in to secretly buy 140 quarts 160 liter of an automotive product containing sodium silicate originally identified as Stop Leak to repair a leaking condenser system The Nautilus was en route to the North Pole on a top secret mission to cross the North Pole submerged 33 Firearm cartridges Edit A historical use of the adhesive properties of sodium silicates is the production of paper cartridges for black powder revolvers produced by Colt s Manufacturing Company during the period from 1851 until 1873 especially during the American Civil War Sodium silicate was used to seal combustible nitrated paper together to form a conical paper cartridge to hold the black powder as well as to cement the lead ball or conical bullet into the open end of the paper cartridge Such sodium silicate cemented paper cartridges were inserted into the cylinders of revolvers thereby speeding the reloading of cap and ball black powder revolvers This use largely ended with the introduction of Colt revolvers employing brass cased cartridges starting in 1873 34 35 Similarly sodium silicate was also used to cement the top wad into brass shotgun shells thereby eliminating any need for a crimp at the top of the brass shotgun shell to hold a shotgun shell together Reloading brass shotgun shells was widely practiced by self reliant American farmers during the 1870s using the same waterglass material that was also used to preserve eggs The cementing of the top wad on a shotgun shell consisted of applying from three to five drops of waterglass on the top wad to secure it to the brass hull Brass hulls for shotgun shells were superseded by paper hulls starting around 1877 The newer paper hulled shotgun shells used a roll crimp in place of a waterglass cemented joint to hold the top wad in the shell However whereas brass shotshells with top wads cemented with waterglass could be reloaded nearly indefinitely given powder wad and shot of course the paper hulls that replaced the brass hulls could be reloaded only a few times Food and medicine Edit While not actually a medical use sodium silicate and other silicates are the primary components in instant wrinkle remover creams which temporarily tighten the skin to minimize the appearance of wrinkles amp under eye bags These creams when applied as a thin film and allowed to dry for a few minutes can present dramatic results This effect is not permanent lasting from a few minutes up to a couple of hours It works like water cement once the muscle starts to move it cracks and leaves white residues on the skin Food preservation Edit World War I poster suggesting the use of waterglass to preserve eggs lower right Waterglass has been used as an egg preservative with large success primarily when refrigeration is not available Fresh laid eggs are immersed in a solution of sodium silicate waterglass After being immersed in the solution they were removed and allowed to dry A permanent air tight coating remains on the eggs If they are then stored in appropriate environment the majority of bacteria which would otherwise cause them to spoil are kept out and their moisture is kept in According to the cited source treated eggs can be kept fresh using this method for up to five months When boiling eggs so preserved the shell is no longer permeable to air and the egg will tend to crack unless a hole in the shell is made e g with a pin in order to allow steam to escape 36 Homebrewing Edit Sodium silicate flocculant properties are also used to clarify wine and beer by precipitating colloidal particles As a clearing agent though sodium silicate is sometimes confused with isinglass which is prepared from collagen extracted from the dried swim bladders of sturgeon and other fishes Eggs preserved in a bucket of waterglass gel and their shells are sometimes also used baked and crushed to clear wine 37 Aquaculture Edit Sodium silicate gel is also used as a substrate for algal growth in aquaculture hatcheries 38 See also EditPotassium silicateReferences Edit a b c d e f Gerard Lagaly Werner Tufar A Minihan A Lovell Silicates in Ullmann s Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry Wiley VCH 2005 doi 10 1002 14356007 a23 661 Giambattista della Porta 1569 Magia naturalis sive de miraculis rerum naturalium libri iiii Natural magic or on the miracles of nature in four books pages 290 291 Crystallus ut fusilis fiat quartz so made molten Published by Guillaume Rouille Gulielmum Rovillium in Lyon Lugdunum France Kohn C 1862 Die Erfindung des Wasserglas im Jahre 1520 The invention of waterglass in the year 1520 Zeitschrift des Oesterreichischen Ingenieur Vereins Journal of the Austrian Engineer Association volume 14 pages 229 230 Johannes van Helmont 1644 Opuscula medica inaudita published by Jost Kalckhoven Jodocum Kalcoven Cologne Germany In Part I De Lithiasi page 53 van Helmont mentions that alkalis dissolve silicates Porro lapides gemmae arenae marmora silices amp c adjuncto alcali vitrificantur sin autem plure alcali coquantur resolvuntur in humido quidem ac resoluta facili negotio acidorum spirituum separantur ab alcali pondere pristini pulveris lapidum Furthermore stone gems sand marble silica etc become glassy by the addition of alkali but if roasted with more alkali they are dissolved in moisture and the former weight of the stone powder is separated from the alkali and released by simply adding acid Johann Rudolf Glauber 1646 Furni Novi Philosophici New Philosophical Furnace Published by Johan Jansson Amsterdam Johann Rudolf Glauber 1661 Furni Novi Philosophici Oder Beschreibung einer New erfundenen Distillir Kunst New Philosophical Furnace or Treatise on Newly Discovered Distillation Art chapter LXXIX pages 164 166 Wie durch Hulff eines reinen Sandes oder Kisslings auss Sale Tartari ein krafftiger Spiritus kan erlanget werden How with the help of a pure sand or silica a powerful solution can be gotten from cream of tartar Anon 1863 Die Erfindung des Wasserglases im Jahre 1520 Kunst und Gewerbe Blatt volume 49 pages 228 230 Anon 1863 Die Erfindung des Wasserglases im Jahre 1520 Reprint Polytechnisches Journal volume 168 pages 394 395 Anon 1863 Die angebliche Erfindung des Wasserglases im Jahre 1520 On the alleged invention of waterglass in the year 1520 Reprint Neues Repertorium fur Pharmacie volume 12 pages 271 273 Johann Nepomuk von Fuchs 1825 Ueber ein neues Produkt aus Kieselerde und Kali On a new product from silica and potash Archiv fur die gesammte Naturlehre volume 5 issue 4 pages 385 412 On page 386 Ich erhielt es zuerst vor ungefahr 7 Jahren I first obtained it about 7 years ago Joh Nepomuk Fuchs 1825 Ueber ein neues Produkt aus Kieselerde und Kali und dessen nuzliche Anwendung als Schuzmittel gegen schnelle Verbreitung des Feuers in Theatern als Bindemittel firnissartigen Anstrichen u s w On a new product from silica and potash and its useful application as a protection against the rapid spread of fire in theaters as a glue varnish etc Polytechnisches Journal volume 17 pages 465 481 Leopold Wolff 1846 Das Wasserglas Seine Darstellung Eigenschaften und seine mannichfache Anwendung in den technischen Gewerben Water glass its preparation properties and its manifold uses in technical commerce published by Quedlinburg Leipzig Germany Emile Kopp 1857 Sur la preparation et les proprietes du verre soluble ou des silicates de potasse et de soude analyse de tous les travaux publies jusqu a ce jour sur ce sujet On the preparation and properties of soluble glass or the silicates of potash and soda analysis of all works published until today on this subject Le Moniteur scientifique volume 1 337 349 pages 366 391 Hermann Kratzer 1887 Wasserglas und Infusorienerde deren Natur und Bedeutung fur Industrie Technik und die Gewerbe Water glass and soluble earths their nature and significance for industry technology and commerce Published by Hartleben Vienna Austria Von Wagner Rudolf 1892 translation of 13th edition by Willian Crookes Manual of Chemical Technology 1 Von Wagner Manual of Chemical Technology 1892 translation Hermann Mayer 1925 Das Wasserglas Sein Eigenschaften Fabrikation und Verwendung auf Grund von Erfahrungen und Mitteilungen der Firma Henkel amp Cie The Water glass Its properties production and application on the basis of experiences and communications of the firm of Henkel amp Co Published by Vieweg Braunschweig Germany Morris Schrero 1922 Water glass A Bibliography Published by Carnegie Library Pittsburgh Pennsylvania Christopher Gelpi Peter Feaver Jason Reifler 2005 Replication data for Success Matters Casualty Sensitivity and the War in Iraq OCLC 795918959 Greenwood Norman N Earnshaw Alan 1997 Chemistry of the Elements 2nd ed Butterworth Heinemann ISBN 978 0 08 037941 8 a b Wang H Y Foote R S Jacobson S C Schneibel J H Ramsey J M 1997 12 15 Low temperature bonding for microfabrication of chemical analysis devices Sensors and Actuators B Chemical 45 3 199 207 doi 10 1016 S0925 4005 97 00294 3 ISSN 0925 4005 a b Puers R Cozma A 1997 09 01 Bonding wafers with sodium silicate solution Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering 7 3 114 117 Bibcode 1997JMiMi 7 114P doi 10 1088 0960 1317 7 3 008 ISSN 0960 1317 a b c Berthold A Nicola L Sarro P M Vellekoop M J 2000 05 15 Glass to glass anodic bonding with standard IC technology thin films as intermediate layers Sensors and Actuators A Physical 82 1 3 224 228 doi 10 1016 S0924 4247 99 00376 3 ISSN 0924 4247 a b Li Dongqing ed 2008 Encyclopedia of Microfluidics and Nanofluidics Boston MA Springer US doi 10 1007 978 0 387 48998 8 ISBN 978 0 387 32468 5 Home PDF JLR Thompson et al Characterization of Silicate Sealers on Concrete Cement and Concrete Research Vol 27 No 10 1997 Burch Paula March 22 2010 Sodium silicate as a fixative for dyeing Retrieved March 22 2010 a b Helliker Kevin The Killer App for Clunkers Breathes Fresh Life Into Liquid Glass The Wall Street Journal 4 August 2009 Engine Disablement Procedures for the CARS program Archived 2010 10 19 at the Wayback Machine cars gov Magic garden Mechanix Illustrated 88 April 1946 Archived from the original on 2012 02 10 Retrieved 2007 04 30 http lakesidepottery com HTML 20Text Tips pottery magic mud magic water paper clay htm Press Release TEPCO 2011 4 6 Commander William R Anderson with Clay Blair Jr Nautilus 90 North Cleveland and New York The World Publishing Co 1959 pp 133 137 Commander William R Anderson with Clay Blair Jr Nautilus 90 North New York The New American Library 1959 89 90 Tom Kelley August 1995 Making and using combustible paper pistol cartridges Kirst W J 1983 Self consuming paper cartridges for the percussion revolver Minneapolis Minnesota Northwest Development Co How To Store Fresh Eggs motherearthnews com SM Tritton 1956 Amateur wine making Bechtold M F 1955 Polymerization and Properties of Dilute Aqueous Silicic Acid from Cation Exchange The Journal of Physical Chemistry 59 6 532 541 doi 10 1021 j150528a013 Further reading EditAshford s Dictionary of Industrial Chemicals third edition 2011 page 8369 External links EditWikimedia Commons has media related to Sodium silicates Centre Europeen d Etudes des Silicates International Chemical Safety Card 1137 ChemSub Online Silicic acid sodium salt ChemSub Online Sodium metasilicate Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php 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