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Other markets
Imerys Building industry
Imerys Electrometallurgy
Imerys Roof tile engobes
Imerys Filler
Imerys Ceramics | Other Markets
Other markets

Imerys Ceramics has been capitalising on its key minerals and technical expertise to diversify into a number of other ceramic markets, which include:

• Building industry (cement, roof tile engobes)
• Construction Materials (aggregates): sand, mica, quartz for decorative purposes - Imerys Decorative Minerals
• Optical fiber
• Solar applications
• Electronics
• Energy supply
• Electrometallurgy

 

Building industry

Imerys Ceramics is a leading player in decorative quartz. Our white crushed quartz, which comes in various particles sizes, is used to make urban furniture and facing slabs; when worked into a resin it is also used in landscaping and various other consumer products.

The quartz produced at our sites in Lot and Dordogne, southwest France, has a distinctive round shape. This enables us to offer:

  • pure silica for technical applications
  • pebbles for decorative use
  • granulates for construction and public works.

With the increasing use of decorative quartz in urban environments, particularly for pre-cast concrete, there are Imerys can supports its customers in their development and provide solutions that meet construction market demands.

Electrometallurgy

Imerys supplies the leading European silicon smelters with high purity products from its quartz operations in Lot and Dordogne production units in the South West of France.

The specific chemical characterisitic of this quartz ore are high silica content (>99.8%) with low iron and titanium content. The quality and the consistancy are ensured by our manual and optical sorting operations together with our mining expertise. Thanks to these, our customers are able to produce a high quality silicon under good safety and operational conditions,.

After mining and on site pre-screening, the raw material is transported to the plant for washing and sorting. The purified quartz is then loaded onto trains by automatic conveyors to be delivered to our customer's processing plants.

As the need for even higher quality products is emerging (high purity silicon is the foundation of photovaltic cells technology), our dedicated development teams are constantly looking at new deposits to offer an enduring supply of quality raw materials for now and the future.

Roof tile engobes

Imerys supplies made-to-order engobes for roof tiles. They are available in liquid (slurry) or powder form. Engobes are a mixture of minerals applied to a roof tile before glazing for decoration and to make the tile more durable to weathering. A wide variety of colours with either matt or brilliant finishes are available enabling consumers to make an original feature of their roof tiles for example for new buildings, or even to imitate the patterns on old weathered roof tiles which usually take years to develop.

The main property of an engobe is its colour and the challenge is to ensure that the colour maintains stability through every production batch. Imerys ensures this by keeping the very first production batch of each product as a control against which all future batches are compared. Imerys quality control specialists consider not only the colour, but also other key parameters such as the aspect (soft, rough, brilliant, matt); the viscosity of liquid products and the lifetime of the engobe, which is typically one year. Bacteria growth pose a serious threat to the quality of the engobes and its viscosity, Imerys controls these through biocides and others high grade chemical products.

Engobes for roof tiles are, by definition, tailored solutions. In accordance with customer requirements we have the resources to provide both very large and small volumes. In addition, the geographic area, the properties of the tile's clay, the characteristics of the engobe application, the firing temperature etc. must all be accounted for when imitating a particular slate grade for instance. Imerys has over 100 references for engobes, and each one has been designed for a specific customer. Some examples of Imerys references include:

  • Slatey grade, a shiny dark engobe that gives a very stable slate effect
  • Flamed brown grades, applied as a fog for rustic roofs
  • Powders for applications with relief, for imitation of lichens and weathering patterns
  • A very high grade engobe with a long lifetime that ensures against cracks and spots
Filler

In North America Imerys Ceramics works in partnership with its customers to provide new and innovative solutions. From minerals to industrial applications, Imerys draws on its vast knowledge to improve its customers’ products and processes. Our understanding of market needs, technical creativity, operating excellence and disciplined cost management make Imerys a world leader in adding value to minerals.

The higher surface area of Suprex®, has gained worldwide recognition as the premier kaolin filler. Higher modulus, tensile strength, tear resistance, abrasion resistance, and green strength are just a few of the benefits from using Suprex®. Additionally, the hard kaolin properties provide cured stiffness to elastomeric compounds. Imerys also offers lower surface area kaolins such as, Paragon®, which provide lower modulus build at equal loadings as compared with hard kaolins. Greater flexibility and higher elongation are also benefits derived from using Paragon® where lower vulcanizate physical properties are required.

#3380 is a performance ball clay extender designed to be a cost effective option to air-floated kaolins. As a result of its fine particle size and high surface area, this product imparts similar physical properties in elastomeric compounds.

Minspar® is a pebble mill-ground extender produced by a specially designed classification from head feed produced by wet froth flotation of alaskite ore mined from a remarkably uniform granite deposit. Minspar® has found wide acceptance in water-based and solvent based coatings for both exterior and interior applications. Because of this unique method of processing, Minspar® has gained acceptance in silicone rubber adhesive & sealants and plastic markets. Superior whitness, low oil absorption, excellent tint retention and non-frosting are just some of the benefits.

   
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