Editorial Feature

Silicon Nitride (Si3N4) Nanoparticles – Properties, Applications

Nanoparticle research has provided numerous innovative and unexpected solutions in the field of ceramics, electronics, pharmaceuticals and optics. This article will look into the properties and applications of silicon nitride.

Silicon nitride (Si3N4) nanoparticles are characterized by their large surface area, resistance to oxidation at high temperatures, wear and corrosion resistance. These particles are not soluble in water and are able to withstand both hot and cold shocks. Silicon belongs to Block P, Period 3 while nitrogen belongs to Block P, Period 2 of the periodic table. It is important to maintain dryness and seal these particles in vacuum and also avoid any stress on them.

Chemical Properties

The following tables list the chemical properties of silicon nitride.

Chemical Data
Chemical symbol Si3N4
CAS No 12033-89-5
Group Silicon 14
Nitrogen 15
Electronic configuration Silicon [Ne] 3s2 3p2
Nitrogen [He] 2s2 2p3
Chemical Composition
Element Content (%)
Silicon 60.05
Nitrogen 39.92

Physical Properties

Silicon nitride nanoparticles appear in the form of a silvery powder having a spherical surface area. The table below provides the physical properties of these nanoparticles.

Properties Metric Imperial
Density 3200 kg/cm3 115607.33 lb/in3
Molar Mass 140.28 g/mol -

Thermal Properties

The thermal properties of silicon nitride nanoparticles have not been determined.


The applications of silicon nitride nanoparticles are given below:

  • Metallurgy, aviation, chemical, energy and machinery industries in making parts like ball/roller bearing, sleeve, valves and other wear resistants
  • Making of cutting tools, moulds, cylinder wall coatings, turbine rotor and blades
  • Making of composites such as ceramics, graphite, rubber, metals, adhesives, etc
  • Spray nozzles, spray pipes for rockets and missiles.

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