Stone is a natural material extracted from the earth. It does not burn and it is fire resistant. Stone absorbs heat and retains heat well, and because of this, it is cool to the touch. It is normally dense, creating heavy weight. Architects and engineers must make sure a building structure can support the weight of the stone, which is expressed in weight per unit of volume.
Also, stone is porous; it absorbs water and other liquids that can create stains. Water absorption is a measure of porosity of a stone, and it can be an indicator of susceptibility to damage in freezing conditions. The maximum allowable water absorption for stone ranges from 0.20 percent for marble to 12 percent for limestone.
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Compressive strength is a measure of the resistance to crushing loads. The compressive strength is the maximum load per unit area that the stone can bear without crushing. Values range from 1,800 pounds per square inch (psi) for marble, to 19,000 for granite granite being the strongest under compression.
Abrasion resistance is also known as resistance to wear; it determines whether a stone is suitable for use as a flooring surface. The abrasion test has a result of an index number, generally scaled to range between 0 and 100. Softer stones such as sandstone and slate will have an index of approximately 8, marble and limestone will have an index of approximately 10, and granite, the hardest, will have an index of at least 25. Resistance to abrasion is highly correlated to Knoop micro hardness. The Knoop micro hardness test represents the relationship between a load acting on a diamond penetrator and the area of the impression achieved on the stone.
Fissures occur naturally in many stone types. A fissure is defined by the American Geological Institute as “an extensive crack, break, or fracture in the rock, which may contain
Stone is often used in kitchens or bathrooms to create an earthy feeling of natural simplicity and provide a durable surface that will not need much maintenance, considering the water or humidity that will be present. The photograph is of a residential bathroom where tumbled marble tiles were used for the wall above the sink to provide a feeling of nature incorporated with the function of washing. The color and simplicity of the sink in a stone composite by Swanstone Corporation blends with the natural color and feel of the tumbled marble tiles. The stone composite sink is seamless for easy cleaning and prevention of mold growth.
Decorating Gallery 4.3 Composite Stone Sink. This Swanstone composite stone sink provides an easily cleanable surface to blend with the tumbled marble tile wall in a residential bathroom.