Here at Marble Creations, we are understandably well-versed with quartz. We use it every day in our worktops, so we know an awful lot about its various properties and variances.
So we thought we would pass some of that knowledge of to you! We want everyone to be as in love with this versatile material as we are. Here are some facts about quartz you may not have known.
For starters, it’s actually difficult to trace the origins of the word quartz. It stems from the German word “Quartz”, which itself comes from another German word, “twarc”, roughly associated with the Slavic Polish word “twardy”, meaning “hard”. That’s quite a long path just to arrive at “hard”!
What is much easier to understand is the scientific fact that quartz is the most abundant mineral on Earth. Comprised of silicon and oxygen, it is found in all types of rocky terrain, and is present (in at least small quantities) in almost all rocks on the planet.
Though pure quartz is colourless, thanks to many variations in its formation in a multitude of places around the world, it comes in a variety of colours and types. Opaque quartz variances include:
These vary in colour and size, often with unique patterns due to their formation. You will see these patterns at work in some of our quartz worktops.
Transparent or translucent quartz also comes in various forms:
- Amethyst (Pale purple)
- Citrine (Pale yellow or brown)
- Milky Quartz (White)
- Rose Quartz (Pale pink or red)
- Smoky Quartz (From completely colourless to opaque grey or black)
This range of colours and styles has made quartz a common material in jewellery and ornaments. Gemstones and sculptures have been cut from the rock for hundreds of years. That means that quartz mining is big business, with a lot of its production coming from Brazil.
Here are some other quick fire facts on quartz:
- When pressurised, quartz can conduct electricity
- It is used for internal components of watches
- Due to it being comprised partly of silicon, it is used for computer parts
- Pure quartz, as it is colourless and see through, can be used in the production of glass
Finally, we have something truly amazing. Did you know that quartz can be grown? It’s a complicated technique, but it involves dissolving excess quartz (most natural quartz is imperfect, so is cut away from the pure stuff) in an alkaline solution, and placing it in a highly pressurised chamber with small pure quartz “seeds”. The process produces uniform shaped and sized crystals, without the impurities of natural quartz. So not only can we grow it, we can do it better than nature can!