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Sandstone is a grained sedimentary rock that is formed when sand is consolidated, compacted and bonded together with a naturally occurring cement, like silica. These consolidated sand mass components of sandstone can be deposited by wind or largely by moving water. Sandstone is an extreme hard and tough rock with a coarse texture. The color of this rock is mostly determined by the cementing substance. When sandstone is naturally cemented by any Iron Oxide, red or reddish-brown sandstone is formed. The other cementing factor produces white, grayish or even yellow sandstone.

Chemically, sandstone has the same composition as sand, and thus it is mostly composed of quartz. The composition of the cementing material is mostly of silica, iron oxide (FeO3) or calcium carbonate (CaCO3).

There are several quartz-based rocks with natural sandstone being the youngest of them all. Each quartz-based stone has its different level of porosity, compressive strength and even hardness. They have a variety of colors; varying from brown, green, red, yellow, white and gray. Sandstone has a distinctive texture of medium grained, the well sorted grains of almost the same size with the grains being sub-angular or rounded.

Certain properties characterize sandstone. The characteristics are high mechanical strength, resistance to all acids and alkalis, resistance to air and to Saline water. Sandstone has a low absorption ability to water. It does not corrode and cannot be affected by weather. Sandstone can easily bind with cement.

Sandstone has three broad groups; Arkosic sandstone: This group of sandstone has a high amount of identifiable feldspar grains with a high level of quartz in its composition. Quartzose sandstone: This group of sandstone also has quartz in a higher percentage. Argillaceous sandstone its composition has a higher percentage of clay or in some cases slit.

There are also varieties of sandstone, which are dependent on its color and place of origin.

Chocolate Sandstone - A variety of sedimentary rock, known as Proterozoic arenaceous. It is mostly found in the Northwest highland part of Scotland. Sandstone contains a high percentage of iron oxide and is mostly used for exterior use in wall cladding. Marson Copper - This variety of sandstone is also called Bhilwara-Brown. Its composition is mainly of quartz grains and some other minerals of moderately uniform sizes. Dholpur beige comes in a white color, and it is known for its usefulness in so many historical and ancient buildings and sometimes monuments. Agra Red - A variety of sandstone that has a smooth surface which is soft, thus, it's idle for stone handicrafts. This sandstone is also known as Dholpur red.

Dholpur pink- uniformity of the grain size of this variety is outstanding. It is also durable and mostly useful in walls and boundaries exterior cladding. Zalitpur yellow- Also known as LLP-yellow, this variety of sandstone is highly resistant to heat and acid, and thus it is highly useful in the exterior cladding for buildings found at-sea shores. Sandstone is particularly useful in flooring, sharpening objects, grinding wheels, countertops, tile production, glass production, walling, paving and in making of fireplace.

Additional Resources

Rhyolite   Sandstone Uses   Sedimentary Rock

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