Sainte-Claire Deville obtained a grey product, from which, on dissolving out the aluminium with sodium hydroxide, they obtained a crystalline product, which they thought to be a modification of boron, but which was shown later to be a mixture of aluminium borides with more or less carbon.
Stock (Comptes rendus, 1900, 131, p. 139) obtained two borides, SiB 3 and SiB6.
The furnace used by Henri Moissan in his experiments on reactions at high temperatures, on the fusion and volatilization of refractory materials, and on the formation of carbides, suicides and borides of various metals, consisted, in its simplest form, of two superposed blocks of lime or of limestone with a central cavity cut in the lower block, and with a corresponding but much shallower inverted cavity in the upper block, which thus formed the lid of the furnace.
Moissan showed that at this temperature the most stable of mineral combinations are dissociated, and the most refractory elements are converted into vapour, only certain borides, silicides and metallic carbides having been found to resist the action of the heat.
In connexion with these experiments he developed the electric furnace as a convenient means of obtaining very high temperatures in the laboratory; and by its aid he prepared many new compounds, especially carbides, silicides and borides, and melted and volatilized substances which had previously been regarded as infusible.