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[fil-oh-sil-i-kit, -keyt] /ˌfɪl oʊˈsɪl ɪ kɪt, -ˌkeɪt/
any silicate mineral having the tetrahedral silicate groups linked in sheets, each group containing four oxygen atoms, three of which are shared with other groups so that the ratio of silicon atoms to oxygen atoms is two to five.
1945-50; phyllo- + silicate Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for phyllosilicate
  • Bentonite is an absorbent aluminum phyllosilicate generally impure clay consisting mostly of montmorillonite.
  • Characterized by abundant light-colored feldspar grains that contrast with the dark-colored phyllosilicate component.
  • There are many different phyllosilicate clay minerals.
  • phyllosilicate minerals: mica group, chlorite group.
British Dictionary definitions for phyllosilicate


any of a class of silicate minerals, including talc, consisting of thin sheets
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Encyclopedia Article for phyllosilicate

layer silicate

compound with a structure in which silicate tetrahedrons (a central silicon atom surrounded by four oxygen atoms at the corners of a tetrahedron) are arranged in sheets. Examples are talc and mica. Three of the oxygen atoms of each tetrahedron are shared with other tetrahedrons, but no two tetrahedrons have more than one oxygen atom in common; each tetrahedron, therefore, is linked to three others. The silicon atoms are arranged at the corners of hexagons, and the unshared oxygen atoms are commonly oriented on the same side of the sheet. Because these are capable of forming chemical bonds with other metal atoms, the silicate sheets are interleaved with layers of other elements. The various layers are stacked to form a grouping with the unshared oxygen atoms toward the centre, and these groups are weakly held together; this gives the phyllosilicates their distinct cleavage parallel to the layers. Phyllosilicates have chemical formulas that contain silicon (Si) and oxygen (O) in some multiple of Si2O5.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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