Definition - What does Silica mean?

Silica, also known as quartz sand is mud which consists of various types of granular materials such as sandstones, chert, quartz, diatomite, small amounts of coal, clay and other minerals.

Silica sand is used for a variety of industrial applications depending on the grain size, texture and shape of the sample to be used. It is largely used in the preparation of silica gel, silica-based coatings and drilling mud. It is also used as a building product and abrasive.

Petropedia explains Silica

The earth's surface is covered with a layer of silica sand that constitutes of clay and clay-like materials grouped together. There can be two, three, or more than three layers of silica in the atomic structure of silica molecule. A typical silica molecule has silicon molecule at the center which is bounded by oxygen molecules at the corners to form a tetrahedron structure.

Silica acts as a solute and has the ability to get dissolved in a solvent such as water and other solvents to become silica gel which can be used for drilling purposes and other industrial applications such as in hydraulic fracturing of oil wells.
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