[ sil-i-kit, -keyt ]

  1. Mineralogy. any of the largest group of mineral compounds, as quartz, beryl, garnet, feldspar, mica, and various kinds of clay, consisting of SiO2 or SiO4 groupings and one or more metallic ions, with some forms containing hydrogen. Silicates constitute well over 90 percent of the rock-forming minerals of the earth's crust.

  2. Chemistry. any salt derived from the silicic acids or from silica.

Origin of silicate

First recorded in 1805–15; silic(a) + -ate2

Other words from silicate

  • sil·i·ca·tion [sil-i-key-shuhn], /ˌsɪl ɪˈkeɪ ʃən/, noun
  • non·sil·i·cate, noun
  • sub·sil·i·cate, noun

Words Nearby silicate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use silicate in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for silicate


/ (ˈsɪlɪkɪt, -ˌkeɪt) /

  1. a salt or ester of silicic acid, esp one of a large number of usually insoluble salts with polymeric negative ions having a structure formed of tetrahedrons of SiO 4 groups linked in rings, chains, sheets, or three dimensional frameworks. Silicates constitute a large proportion of the earth's minerals and are present in cement and glass

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for silicate


[ sĭlĭ-kāt′ ]

  1. Any of a large class of chemical compounds composed of silicon, oxygen, and at least one metal. Most rocks and minerals are silicates.

  2. Any mineral containing the group SiO4, either isolated, or joined to other groups in chains, sheets, or three-dimensional groups with metal elements. Micas and feldspars are silicate minerals.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.