Silicones are inorganic polymers formed from a silicon-oxygen chain (...-Si-O-Si-O-Si-O-...) to which groups are attached. Some organic groups can be used to link several of these -Si-O- chains together.
The most common type is linear poly (dimethylsiloxane) or PDMS. The second largest group of silicone materials is silicone resins, formed by branched or cage-shaped oligosiloxanes.
By varying the length of the -Si-O- chains, the fixed groups, and the links between chains, the silicones provide a wide variety of materials. Their consistency ranges from liquid to hard plastic, including gel and gum. Silicones are present everywhere in everyday life in the form of sealants, glues, gaskets, anti-foaming additives for detergent powders, cosmetics, medical equipment, electrical cable ducts, high-performance greases, and more.
Silicones are distinguished by two fundamental properties: A Si-O- "strong" bond, which offers strong chemical inertia, good UV resistance and a high-degradation temperature.
Flexibility of the polymer chain, which offers low viscosity, a low glass transition temperature and low dependence of mechanical properties, such as viscosity.