Industrial Petrography

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Industrial Petrography


the branch of petrography concerned with the study of such artificial stone materials as concrete, cement, brick, ceramics, sitalls and glass, slags, refractory materials, abrasives, and ore agglomerates. Industrial petrography is closely related to experimental petrography and mineralogy and to the physical chemistry of equilibrium processes, in particular, the study of phase diagrams of silicate, oxide, and other systems and the body of knowledge on silicates.

Industrial petrography studies the nature of the changes occurring upon heating in various types of industrial raw materials, such as clays, talc, carbonate rocks, and gypsum. Research on the phase (mineral) composition and microstructure of technical products leads to a deeper understanding of the physicochemical processes occurring in the production of artificial stone and helps to find ways for improving the quality of these materials. The research done in industrial petrography also helps to uncover the causes of the breakdown of stone under the effect of high temperatures, chemical processes, and weathering and to develop methods of monitoring technological processes and factory production, for example, at various cement, ceramic, and glass factories.

Furthermore, the results of studies carried out in industrial petrography can be applied to the study of rocks in nature. Thus, for example, slags and molten cements, refractory materials, and glass may be used to clarify the features of the crystallization of igneous rock, while various refractory materials, clinker, and ceramics may be used in the study of metamorphic rock. Concrete and various cement mortars may be used to study sedimentary rock. Industrial petrography makes use of spectral and chemical analysis, electron microscopy, thermal analysis, and X-ray phase analysis. D. S. Beliankin (1932) laid the scientific basis of industrial petrography in the USSR.


Eksperiment v oblasti tekhnicheskogo mineraloobrazovaniia. Moscow, 1975.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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