All about Silicone Rings
It may come as a surprise, but silicon and silicone are two very different things.
In short, silicon is a naturally occurring chemical element, whereas silicone is a synthetic substance.
Silicon is the 14th element on the periodic table. It's a metalloid, meaning it has properties of both metals and nonmetals, and is the second most abundant element in the Earth's crust, after oxygen.
Elemental silicon is a major player in modern electronics because it's an ideal semiconductor of electricity. When heated into a molten state, silicon can be formed into semi-conductive wafers, to serve as the base for integrated circuits (microchips).
Silicone, by contrast, is a synthetic polymer made up of silicon, oxygen and other elements, most typically carbon and hydrogen. Silicone is generally a liquid or a flexible, rubberlike plastic, and has a number of useful properties, such as low toxicity and high heat resistance. It also provides good electrical insulation.
Due to its high heat resistance, silicone makes up a lot of kitchenware, such as oven mitts, tongs and pan handles; silicone's non-stick properties also make it useful for cookware coatings. Additionally, the material's heat resistance and slipperiness make it an ideal lubricant for automotive parts (as a lubricating spray or grease).
Is Silicone and Rubber Rings the Same?
Both rubber and silicone are elastomers. They are polymeric materials that exhibit the viscoelastic behaviour, which is generally called elasticity. Silicone can be distinguished from rubbers by the atomic structure. In addition, silicones have more special properties than normal rubbers. Rubbers are naturally occurring, or they can be synthesized. Based on this, silicone can be differentiated from rubber.
Silicone is a synthetic rubber. It is synthesized by modifying silicon.
Benefits of Silicone
Silicone elastomers have many benefits over other elastomers. These include:
Extreme Temperature Resistance
High and low temperature applications
Excellent Environmental Resistance
General (rain, snow, etc)
Low Compression Set
Good resistance to compression set at high temperatures
Great for sealing
Low level of flammable components
When exposed to flame,
the elastomer is reduced to a non-conducting silica ash
High physiological inertness
Resistant to bacteria and fungi
Negatives of Silicone
Although having many benefits, silicone also has some negatives depending on what job you need the material to do or withstand.
If you are looking for an elastomer with good abrasion properties then we would generally advise silicone is not your material.Hence the reason you don’t see car tires or soles of shoes made from silicone as their lifespan would be short
Poor Oil/Petroleum Resistance
Silicone is prone to swelling if in contact with oil for a period of time.