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SiliaPlate Selection Guide

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For over 18 years, SiliCycle has been offering a wide selection of TLC plates in various sizes (plate, thickness), backings (Glass, Aluminum, Plastic) and chemistries (CN, C18, NH2, 10% Silver Nitrate) to provide best separation experience for both qualitative and quantitative analysis.

SiliaPlate represents an efficient and economical alternative to other TLC plate manufacturers while demonstrating high separation efficiency and low background noise, due to the narrow particle size distribution silica gel used for manufacturing.

The extraordinary silica layer hardness combined to a homogeneous coating and layer thickness allow excellent separation without cracking or blistering. Each TLC batch is chemically and physically controlled by our Quality Control department to ensure lot-to-lot, layer-to-layer and batch-to-batch reproducibility.
SiliCycle is a worldwide leader in silica gel products for chromatography, and we are committed to providing high quality plates to streamline our customers’ expectations for price and quality. Besides, we are continuously investing in our research to improve our portfolio and meet today’s ongoing developments.

Types of SiliaPlate Backings



  • High heating stability;
  • High chemical resistance;
  • Transparent.
SiliCycle SiliaPlate - glass backed TLC plates


  • Thick;
  • High fragility;
  • Impossible scissors cutting;
  • Cannot be stored in lab notebook.
  • High weight.




  • Thin;
  • Low weight;
  • High heating stability;
  • Low fragility;
  • Easy scissors cutting;
  • Can be stored in lab notebook.
SiliCycle SiliaPlate - aluminum backed TLC plates


  • Low chemical resistance;
  • Opaque.




  • Thin;
  • Low fragility;
  • Possible scissors cutting;
  • High chemical resistance;
  • Can be stored in lab notebook.
SiliCycle SiliaPlate - plastic backed TLC plates


  • Opaque.
  • Medium weight;
  • Heating stability up to 175°C.

Plate Types

SiliCycle offers different types of plates for thin layer chromatography applications: classical TLC, high performance TLC (also called HPTLC) and preparative TLC (PLC). The plate types are selected based on the type of analysis required and the available budget.

Differences between classical TLC, HPTLC and PLC

Properties Classical TLC HPTLC Preparative PLC
Application Quick, inexpensive, flexible and portable separations Highly sophisticated separation problems, complex samples Purification on a TLC plate
Analysis Qualitative Qualitative & Quantitative Quantitative
Detection UV
Instrumented analysis (use of scanners for detection) UV
Price Lower prices than HPTLC Higher prices than TLC -
[Mean Particle Size]
5 - 20 µm
[10 - 12 µm]
4 - 8 µm
[5 - 6 µm]
5 - 40 µm
[25 µm]
Layer Thickness 250 µm 200 µm 0.5 mm, 1 mm, 2 mm
Typical Sample Volume 1 – 5 µL 0.1 – 0.5 µL 5 – 20 µL

Available Sorbents

Various adsorbents can be used for TLC coating; silica, alumina, florisil, etc. However, silica gel is probably the most versatile since it covers almost all types of separation (if the right solvent system is selected). More than 80% of all purifications are performed using silica gel as the adsorbent.

Silica gel Aluminum oxide Cellulose
Can be unmodified or functionalized, and suitable for a myriad of molecules of functionalities & polarities, such as aflatoxins, alkaloids, barbiturates, fatty acids, flavonoids, glycosides, lipids, nucleosides, proteins, pesticides, sweeteners, vitamins and so on. Aluminum oxide (commonly called Alumina) is the second most commonly used matrix, and shows similar selectivity to that of silica, with 3 different pH ranges (basic, neutral, acidic).
Popular applications include the separation for alkaloids, aliphatic compounds, aromatics, steroids, etc.
Cellulose can be unmodified or positively charged at acidic or neutral pH, and is hence frequently used for the partition of hydrophilic molecules and challenging separations of sensitive biomolecules carrying ion exchange groups.
The ratio of charged cellulose cellulose can be varied to provide more or less retention.

The particle size distribution used for the silica is related to the nature of the plate. For standard TLC, silica gel with a mean particle size of 10 - 14 µm is used compared to HPTLC where a smaller particle size is required. In both cases, pore diameter is always 60 Å. Some functionalized silica gels like reversed-phase (C18, C8, Amine, Cyano, Diol, ...) and specialty (Silver Nitrate) plates can also be used as TLC adsorbent for particular needs.

The two most popular modes of separation employed in TLC are normal and reversed phases :

  • in normal phase separation, the mobile phase is less polar than the stationary phase.
  • inversely, in reversed mode, the mobile phase (usually a mixture of water and organic solvent) is more polar than the stationary phase (C18).

> SiliaPlate Normal Phase TLC Plates
> SiliaPlate Reversed-phase TLC Plates

SiliaPlate Sizes

SiliaPlate TLC plates are available in the following standard sizes depending on the coating used:

  • 20 x 20 cm,
  • 10 x 20 cm,
  • 5 x 20 cm,
  • 5 x 10 cm
  • 10 x 10 cm

Micro SiliaPlate

Also for your convenience, SiliCycle provides ready-to-use micro TLC plates in the following sizes:

  • 2.5 x 10 cm,
  • 2.5 x 7.5 cm
  • 2.5 x 5 cm

Scored SiliaPlate

An interesting compromise between standard and micro plate sizes is our Scored SiliaPlate (glass backing). Two different formats are available and possible cut combinations are shown in the image below.

  • 20 x 20 cm plates scored to get four 5 x 20 cm plates (or multiple of 5 cm width).
  • 10 x 20 cm plates scored to get seven 2.5 x 10 cm plates (or multiple of 2.5 cm width).


Binder & UV Indicator

All standard SiliaPlate products are made with a Gypsum binder and have an UV indicator (F254).
A long-wavelength (F366) UV indicator is also available.
Contact us for custom products.

Layer Thickness

The layer thickness is related to the nature of the analysis (analytical or preparative) as well as the performance of the plate (TLC or HPLTC). The most common layer thicknesses are:



Discover SiliaPlate TLC Plates Portfolio