What is Granite?
Granite is a type of igneous rock. Its texture is granular, and is a common type of intrusive, felsic rock. The main components of granite are quartz, mica, and feldspar. Some crystals can be larger than others which affect the texture of the rock. This is also known as prophyritic. The color of the granite can vary on how the stone was originated. In this case, the granite would have a pinkish, grey color. Granite comes in many different shapes, and colors. Depending on how much of each mineral is stored in the stone, it will make its own color. Granite is usually found in the continental plates or the Earth’s crust. It is mainly used as a construction stone for house, building, and floors. Granite comes from a Latin term granum meaning, a grain such as a crystalline rock.
The only place known where granite is located is on the Earth’s continental crust. It has been around for generations and is a basement rock that underlines the thin sedimentary veneers of the continents. Granite is formed from magma that would evolve into a different igneous rock. A process known as fractional crystallizations reduces a melt in iron, magnesium, titanium, calcium and sodium, and enriches the melting process in potassium and silicon. These steps are an important factor in the construction of granite. This process will happen whether or not the magma is present. The Chappell and White classification system was introduced to divide granite into what called an igneous protolith and or a sedimentary protolith. This type of granite is created by melting higher quality metamorphic rock. The types of rock that would be formed is a M-type or an A-type of rock. M-type was made in order to cover granite which was sourced from crystallized mafic magma. It is rare and difficult because it is a complicated process to turn basalt into granite. A-type is formed over what is known a “hot spot”. Granite is formed by melting the lower crust under conditions that are extremely dry. Yellowstone caldera is an example of A-type granite.
Granites are a natural source of radiation. Certain types of granite can be harmful considering how much radiation is stored in them. Thorium also occurs in granite. Thorium is another form of natural radiation. In order to purchase granite it needs to be tested to see if the levels of radiation are safe to put into a house. Granite is used all throughout the world. The Red Pyramid in Egypt is known for its granite surface. Granite was also used in Ancient Egypt times for columns, doors, sills, jambs, wall and floor veneers. Granite is also popular for the use of gravestones and memorials. Until the 18th century, granite was cut by hand which resulted in poor results. Alexander MacDonald created the technique of steam-powered cutting. Granite is popular for building floors and countertops in kitchens due to its high durability.