Returning to our previous article, we begin to discover that some materials are commercially classified as marble and granite, but in reality are very different .
Super White, Fusion Black and Taj Mahal: not marble, nor granite
Super White is one of these materials that cannot be classified as marble or granite on the first go.
This natural stone comes from Brazil and shows the typical transparency of Bianco Carrara or Palissandro, but the grains remind us more of Statuario. At first sight, it seems as if you would find yourself in the Arctic Sea in front of huge white ice floes which are breaking while melting. You wouldn’t be surprised to see a pair of polar bears on one of these floes…. in danger to drive off course.
Is this material marble thanks to its transparency, or granite thanks to its resistance?
Neither marble nor granite…. although we’ve classified Super White as granite, it is actually a natural quartzite.
Quartzite is a metamorphic rock and a very hard material, that means sandstone, actually sand, has been converted to quartzite.
Do you know how glass is produced? First take sand and heat it at high temperature, sometimes the temperature is over thousand degree! This is how the stone was created by nature: very high temperatures have melted the sand and high pressure has pressed and hardened the material. The whole process lasted, of course, several years, or rather some hundred thousand years!
That explains the vitreous appearance, but really fascinating is the fact that this quartzite is as hard as flint stone and its structure and composition is also very similar, it’s just quartzite. Please don’t confuse it with quartzite that has been artificially produced in the last years.
If there are coloured minerals during the conversion, the colour spreads all over the material during the melting process, as it happened with Fusion Black, another beautiful quartzite from Brazil with a black and golden ground colour.
A special light quartzite is Taj Mahal. Don’t mix up with this name, that evokes Agra, an Indian city: Taj Mahal is a quartzite from Brazil. This white coloured quartzite reminds us of the marble Calacatta, but it is much more resistant and can be easily used as a kitchen top without worrying about scratches as it normally happens with marble.
Thanks to its particular structure this material comes to its full beauty when it is book matched polished, that means that all the slabs of a block are serially numbered and then slab n. 1 and slab n. 2 are polished in such a way, that one slab becomes the mirror image of the other slab. This process is repeated in chronological order until every slab has got a continuous lattice shaped design.
An oddity: in the stone age quartzite was often used instead of flint stone to produce arrowheads and scrapers.