Formation of Granite

Igneous or Metamorphic?

Geology is the study of earths natural and mineral resources, the processes involved in granite formation described here can only be speculative, even by geologists. In terms of granite geology, it is debated whether granite is igneous or metamorphic in origin, as the process is purported to take millions of years. According to the origins of the names, the descriptive meanings describe both initial and end process of the formation of granite types. Ideally, and for simplicity, this would be better described either as 2 types, or if combined as 'Igneomorphic' which is an uncommonly used term.

This brief granite geology overview details the formation of granite as an intrusive igneous rock. Forming initially as magma, through to the evolution of one of many resulting rock types 'granite'. Granite is found throughout the world and is processed and mined for many uses and requires extra-ordinary stonemasonry skills both in our hidden history and with today's modern machinery.

Granite

'Granite' originates from the Latin word 'Granum' meaning 'Grain'. The structure of granite is coarse-grained crystalline Rock.

Geology

From Greek, 'Geo' meaning earth and 'Logos' as in philosophy of study through principles, speech and thought.

Igneous

Igneous is derived from the Latin Word 'Ignis' which means fire. Because igneous Rock is formed from magma.

Metamorphic

Metamorphic is derived English 'Meta' and greek 'Morphe' to denote a change in condition.

Magma

The granite journey begins with 'Magma' which can either cool above ground (Extrusive) or below ground (Intrusive). Magma's exposure to the elements within its environment will alter the properties alchemically and the speed in which it cools. The cooled and hardened mixture (sometimes through compression) is the basis of all igneous rocks which are classified into 4 catergories, depending upon chemistry and mineral composition.

Felsic

Rich in Silica and Alkali Metal Oxides.

Intermediate

Felsic materials mainly Plagioclase and Mafic materials mainly of hornblende, pyroxene, and/or biotite - Quartz content is Low.

Mafic

Rich in Silica, Magnesium and Iron - Minerals include: olivine, pyroxene, amphibole, and biotite.

Ultramafic

Mantle and Primarily of Olivine and Pyroxenes.

Igneous Types

Igneous rock or magmatic, is one of the three main rock types, the others being sedimentary and metamorphic. Types include granite, andesite, basalt, dacite, obsidian, pumice, rhyolite, scoria, monzonite, granodiorite, diorite, gabbro and tuff. Igneous types can be further classified into the following, according to their formation:

Extrusive igneous

Magma exposed and cooled near or above ground solidify to form Extrusive igneous rocks

Intrusive igneous

Magma cooled below ground solidify to form Intrusive igneous rocks. A longer cooling process allows for a longer crystallization process, resulting in larger crystals

Plutonic igneous

Magma cooled deep inside the earths crust solidifies to form Plutonic igneous rocks, granite is most abundant. Referred often as parental rock, as over time, melts or part melts and flow to the surface. Processes this deep are vague and speculative

Evolution

Now that the parent material of igneous rocks has been briefly described, The evolution of granite and how the many colours and patterns start to form begins.

Metamorphic

As touched upon at the magma stage its exposure to the elements within its environment will alter the properties alchemically and the speed in which it cools. The granite may undergo many pocketed melts also known as 'granatic melts' during its ascent toward the surface. During the metamorphism process the granite will become highly evolved through fractional crystallization. Partial melting and mixing of nearby sedimentary and metamorphic rocks with further enrichment and extraction of minerals. A process that is presumed to last millions of years and cycles continuosly through migration back to the depth of the mantle to be re-melted back to Magma.

Composition

Minerals

The content of each mineral in granite deposits creates the wide variety of colors through the fractionilisation process: Feldspar (Alkali/Plagioclase) - pink or red.
Mica (biotite) - dark brown or black.
Mica (Mucovite) - Yellow.
Quartz - clear pink, white, or black.
Amphibole (Hornblende) - Green, yellow, blue, brown and black.
Olivine - Pale Green.
Pyroxene - Dark Green.

Chemical Composition

Average Granite Chemical composition (some in the form of oxides)
Silicon - 70 t0 77%
Aluminium - 11 to 15%
Potassium - 3 to 5%
Sodium - 3 to 5%
Calcium - 1 to 2%
Iron - 2 to 3%
Less than 1% - Magnesium, Titanium, Phosphorus, Manganese

Physical Properties

Average density of Granite is between
2.65 and 2.75 grams per cm cubed (165 and 172 lb/cu ft).

Granite Compression strength averages above
200 MPa (approx 2 tonnes per square centimetre).

Viscosity near Standard Temperature Pressue
averages 45 grams per cubic centimetre.

Dry Granite Melting temperature at ambient pressure
1215–1260°C (2219–2300 °F).

Wet Granite Melting Temperature
650°C (a few kBar of pressure).

Processing

Granite Outcrops

Found worldwide in what is called 'Granite Outcrops' such as 'tors' (mountains), 'domes', 'bornhardts', and 'rounded massifs'. Outcrops can sometimes appear as circular depressions surrounded by a range of hills, formed by the metamorphic aureole or hornfels. Most granite outcrops are less than 100 km2 stock masses and in batholiths that are often associated with orogenic mountain ranges. Small dikes of granitic composition often associated with the margins of granitic intrusions are called aplites.

Exporters of Granite

Major modern exporters of granite include Brazil, Canada, China
Germany, India, Italy
Spain, Sweden, and the United States

Granite Uses

Granite is mined generally as crushed or as dimension stone for construction, some examples of mined form uses:
Crushed granite:
Asphalt, Concrete, Roads, Railroads & Infrastructure.
Blocks:
Land stabilizing, Construction, Memorials, Monuments & Decor.
Slabs:
Veeners, Cladding, Flooring, Granite Worktops & general decor.

Historic and Modern Stonemasonry

Stonemasonry

One of the oldest human activities and professions, 'Stonemasonry' is the building of structures and sculptures. Most ancient buildings of the near and far distant past were built from stone and many still stand today, albeit weathered, thousands of years later. Not only were these buildings built with incredible precision but with an intricacy that we do not replicate today. Stonemasonry roles are branched and specializations can be divided innto the following job roles: Quarrymen, Sawyers, Banker masons, Carvers, Fixer Masons, Memorial Masons. Mgm & rocks Ltd still finish by hand as that feel of a hand finished polish provide what machines cannot achieve

Hidden History of Granite

Until the early 18th century it is taught that granite could be carved only by hand tools, and even then, the new world machinery could not rival the mastery of stoneworking of times past. Modern research into architecture of the near and far distant history provides evidence of machining and most likely a technology that involved water, sound and vibrations. This is evident in the far distant past of megalithic structures and more recent 'middle (hidden) age' star forts/cities located worldwide. Unfortunately, recent revelations of the past have not yet made written history, nor has it been acknowledged for teaching and training purposes for fear of questioning the current narrative.

Megaliths

A word used by a British antiquarian 'Algernon Herbert' in 1849 in reference to Stonehenge, 'Megalith' in greek means Big Stones'. With over 35,000 megalithic structures in europe alone, it is shameful that academic research has not recognised the complexity and manpower required to erect monumental structures worldwide. Maybe, because we are unable to duplicate the feats achieved, and match the style of construction that is consistent across the world. All this at a time when worldwide communication was not supposed to exist. The accuracy in which the 'big stones' were adjoined without any cementing is unfathomable when a piece of paper cannot penetrate the joins.

The biggest of all are those structures are carved out of the solid rock faces or in a rock bed itself, such as 'Lalibela' in Ethiopa, and 'Petra' in Jordan. In our modern times of lesser quality and passion into construction, we are ignorant to believe that any ancient construction discovered are either tombs or places of worship. We even believe and that hand tools made from soft metals could carve what our modern machinery cannot!

Modern Machinery

Advances in electric motor driven technology over the past few centuries allows for brute force and speed to cut through stone. The addition of water and inclusion of diamonds as an abrasive added to blades and CNC tools allows for an easier and cleaner cut. Although the force with modern machinery is against natures simplified methods of sound and vibration, new technologies are slowly and reluctantly realigning themselves with nature. Water Jet is one of the most recent advances in cutting technology.