Quartzite is a stone of mountain origin. Excellent strength and decorative characteristics provide an opportunity to use it for complex construction projects, implementation of original design ideas, but also for industrial purposes. We begin our description with technical characteristics of quartzite.
Technical characteristics of quartzite
This stone is very durable. Regardless of the project for which it was used, its minimum service life will be 300 years or maybe even more. Quartzite does not deform and does not lose its aesthetic qualities when exposed to various external factors. For example, this stone is resistant to sudden temperature gradient. In addition, we note that it can withstand long-lasting sub-zero temperatures and high temperatures of up to + 2000C. In particular, resistance to heat and high fire resistance of this stone provide an opportunity to use it in the construction of stoves and bath-houses both as one of the basic materials and for lining. In addition to resistance to different temperatures, quartzite is also resistant to alkalis, acids and other aggressive media. Another important characteristic of this stone is its safety in terms of toxicity. Note that, there are no radioactive or dangerous inclusions in its structure. Quartzite will not accumulate radiation if there is no source for it in the room. The stone also includes silver. Therefore, quartzite also has antiseptic properties, which means that no fungal microorganisms and mold can appear on its surface.
Quartzite: the scope of application
Due to such good technical characteristics and high rate of strength and durability, quartzite is used in many areas of construction, design and industry. For example, this stone can be used in construction for external cladding of facades, walls and pedestals. It can be also used as an insulant, and in the process of filling and casting of foundations. As for the use of quartzite in the design, it is used in interior and exterior, as well as landscape design. Interior decoration with quartzite is an original design solution for the medieval and classic interiors, but modern styles can also be perfectly supplemented by this material. For example, when it comes to minimalism and ethnic trends. In addition to the inner cladding of walls, special floor coverings in the form of tiles are also produced of quartzite. Stairs and steps, as well as countertops, windowsills and bar counters made of quartzite will look equally impressive. In landscape design quartzite can be used for paving garden and yard paths, for creating rock gardens, garden-houses, in the lining of pools, fountains and artificial ponds. Quartzite is used in such industries as road construction and metallurgy. This is particularly so with ferruginous quartzite. Special flux, which is necessary for smelting large amounts of metals, is produced of it. Construction of water treating facilities can also be carried out using quartzite.
Quartzite and its peculiarities
Quartzite is the material that has a number of peculiarities. For example, despite the wide scope of application, it should be noted first that the treatment of this stone is a rather complicated process. Quartzite is not, let’s say, a ductile material. For example, when broken, the resulted fracture is uneven and therefore only diamond tools can help in further work with it. But note that the rocks, from which you can get a natural stone in the most genuine form, are the most valuable in the design. Despite the complexity in the primary processing, quartzite is very easy to polish. If the entire process of stone polishing is correct, the original luster may persist for 400 years.
Types of quartzite
If we talk about the types of quartzite, then traditionally it is classified by color. For example, quartzite can be white, yellow-white, gray and also raspberry-red, or pink with predominant various shades of reddish brown, red, or brown. Depending on the impurities, the color may also have additional shades of green, purple, violet, and even black. The most neutral and popular for interior decoration is gray quartzite, the surface of which has a silvery hue. Raspberry-red or pink quartzite is of great demand in architecture, landscape design, as well as in the outer or inner cladding. There is one more special type of quartzite called Shoksha quartzite-sandstone. It belongs to a pink quartzite group, but it has more intense red tint. The peculiarity of this quartzite is that all over the world it is considered to be one of the most beautiful materials for lining. Shoksha deposit of this stone is situated in Karelia, near the western shores of Lake Onega. Many famous buildings and other architectural monuments are faced with this stone. For example, you can see Shoksha quartzite in the cladding of the Engineers’ Castle and St. Isaac’s Cathedral and many other buildings in St. Petersburg. At the time, Tsar Nicholas I gave the French 40 tons of this quartzite for cladding the gravestone of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Decorative features of quartzite
Quartzite also has another curious decorative feature. Some veins can be seen in the structure of the stone. Their size may vary from a fraction of a millimeter up to one meter. They are placed randomly, that’s why the veins look like grid. It is these veins that preserve particles of quartz crystals very well. These inclusions may reflect the rays of the sun and light, and therefore it seems that the surface of the stone sparkles. It is this natural “sparkling” that the designers like in quartzite. Such natural decorative effect is capable to transform the room from inside as well as to give unusual look to any construction.