Learn more about natural stone
When we talk about natural stone we also talk about the formation of the earth’s crust. The formation of natural stone is a continuous geological process. For some types of natural stones it takes millions of years to emerge. Natural stones are created out of cooled liquid rock (magma or lava). Combined with weathering products or from animal / vegetable residues that have been petrified under high pressure. Sometimes this happens with high temperatures. Because of the many differences in this process, there are a lot of natural stone types to recognise. If you want to know more than you can find in this article or if you have a specific wish with regard to the treatment of your own natural stone, please contact us via the button below.
What are the most important characteristics of natural stone?
The reason that natural stones can’t be identical is because of the fact that it’s a natural product. If you are looking for more information about stone care, you can view this page. There are big differences between the types of stones. In most cases a floor or wall is polished and honed. Nitesco has experience with many different types of natural stone. On the page with our case studies you can find results of our method.
What types of natural stone do we know?
We can not give you a complete overview with all the stone types. Thousands of stones under many names are available these days. In the last couple of years new types of natural stone from Asia have become available on the European market. The most known are: marble, limestone, granite, gabbo, gneiss, clay stone, slate and quartzite It’s important to create an order to provide an overview of the types of natural stone. This can be done in the following ways: What is the geological age of the stone? What is the chemical composition of the stone? How was this stone created?
What is the geological age of natural stone? Natural stone can be classified by age. In geology, stone types are classified according to the period in which they originated. For example, the description is: ‘Belgian bluestone originated in the Paleozoic, period Carboniferous, about 300 million years ago. This classification is less relevant in the natural stone sector. We are more interested in technical aspects and application possibilities of the stone. These are not directly dependent on the age of a natural stone.
What is the chemical composition of natural stone?
Natural stone can be classified by chemical composition. In this way of organizing the raw material of which the natural stone consists is central. Based on these raw materials we can distinguished two groups of stone;
Natural stone with silicon dioxide as raw material (quartz). In this group we will find natural stone with silicon dioxide as the main constituent. More than 12% of the Earth’s crust consists of this mineral. Examples are granite, sand and glass.
Natural stones with calcium carbonate as raw material are marble and limestone. Limestone is regularly found in fossils. For example, bluestone is a form of fossil limestone. Consisting of the remains of sea lilies (source: wiki).
What is the origin of natural stone?
How is natural stone created? If we know more about how the stone was formed we also know more about it’s properties and application. Natural stone types with a similar genesis can then be classified in one group. A group can contain many hundreds of natural stone types.
Based on the genesis we can classified stone into three main groups:
Igneous stone is a natural stone from solidified magma or lava. Deep stones are igneous stones that form deep below the Earth’s surface from solidified magma. Leaching stone is created from lava that mixes with other substances during an eruption. Within the group of igneous stones we can distinguish 7 different groups of natural stone: Deep stone, Gangue stone, Satellite gangue stone, Leaching stone, Volcanic tuffs, Volcanic glass
Sedimentary stones are also called sedimentary stone. In the encyclopedia it is also described as: “Sediment or deposit is the name for material transported by wind, water and / or ice. Examples of sediments are gravel, clay, sand silt and lutum. When sediment is deposited, a sedimentary stone is formed.
Rhe meaning of metamorphosis is change. When we talk about a metamorphic stone, we talk about a stone that has undergone a change. A familiar example is marble. This stone is originally as superficial sedimentary limestone deep in the earth transformed, under high pressure, into what we know as marble.
The difference between natural stone and artificial stone
Artificial stone includes almost anything that isn’t natural stone. It is baked or cast by humans and can look a lot like real natural stone. Natural stone can even be made out of natural stone components. Examples are concrete or composites made of quartz, marble or other natural stone types. Artificial stone can even contain plastics. The properties of artificial stone are getting more similar to real natural stone. Maintaining these stones is almost the same as maintaining natural stone. The properties of the material are similar and therefore repair and maintenance are also comparable. For example, an artificial stone in which limestone elements have been incorporated, can be treated with similar methods as calcareous natural stone types. Such as marble and limestone. Quartz composite similar properties to granite types. Which means that they can be processed in a similar way.