Safety Research & Science

Safety Research & Science

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Silicones are among the world’s most important and adaptable materials, used in thousands of products and applications – from health care and personal care to electronics, transportation, construction and energy. The backbone of silicon and oxygen atoms is the foundation of silicone chemistry and allows for the formation of siloxanes. Siloxanes are raw materials based on silicon, oxygen, hydrogen and carbon and are the critical building blocks used to make silicone products. Read more on silicone chemistry.

Siloxanes, including the cyclic siloxanes octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane (D4) and decamethylcyclopentasiloxane (D5) are among the most extensively studied materials used in consumer and industrial applications today. More than 1,000 studies over many decades have been conducted to assess the safety of siloxanes for workers, consumers, the environment, and manufacturing processes. Results of this continuous research and testing demonstrate the safety of siloxanes in their diverse and important applications. A host of independent scientists and expert scientific panels have confirmed siloxanes safety both for human health and the environment.

Silicone Research: An Industry Commitment

The Silicones Industry supports the safe and responsible use of silicone materials, is committed to international environmental stewardship, and endorses the use of risk-based weight-of-evidence (WoE) chemical assessments that consider exposure. The report entitled, “Silicone Research: An Industry Commitment” outlines the industry efforts to work with scientists and regulators to demonstrate the safety of silicone materials.


As part of the Silicones Industry’s commitment to the safety of its products and its sound product stewardship practices, the Industry has proactively conducted several siloxane modelling and monitoring initiatives. Computer models that can estimate a chemical’s physical-chemical properties and potential environmental fate and concentration are important tools for academics, industry, and regulators. Each of the siloxane materials have unique physical-chemical properties that differ significantly from the traditional organic chemicals for which most computer modelling programs have been developed. Thus, the Silicones Industry has collaborated with modelling experts around the world to customize the input parameters of these models based on the properties of the chemical being modelled.

In addition, the Silicones Industry has committed to several environmental monitoring programs aimed at measuring concentrations of siloxanes around the world to customize and validate these models

The Silicones Industry also conducts extensive safety testing programs on an ongoing basis on silicone materials in accordance with regulatory requirements around the world.

Safety Guides

Global Safe Handling of Hexamethyldisilazane

This guide provides the industrial user with supplemental information to promote the safe handling of HMDZ.

Global Safe Handling of Chlorosilanes

This guide provides the industrial user with supplemental information to promote the safe handling of eight chlorosilanes.

Recommendations for Aerosol Applications of Silicone-Based Materials

This document provides information and recommendations relevant to formulating aerosol products containing silicone-based materials.

Materials Handling Guide: Hydrogen-Bonded Silicon Compounds

This guide provides the industrial user with supplemental information to promote the safe handling of SiH products.

Use of Volatile Methyl Siloxanes (VMS) in Industrial Environments

This document informs users of silicone products on measures to minimize emissions of volatile methyl siloxanes (VMS).