Iranian Market (12)
The high quality, color variation and design of the stones produced in Iran have all helped Iran’s rocks rank first in the world.
In this episode of the Iranian Market we are going to discuss stones produced in the Islamic Republic.
Geologically speaking, stone is a natural substance or a solid aggregate of one or more minerals.
Minerals are natural solids which are usually crystallized and homogeneous with certain chemical compounds.
More than three thousand minerals have already been discovered in nature more than twenty of which are found vastly in the earth’s crust.
These minerals are called stone- producing minerals.
Rocks are defined into three major groups namely, igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic.
Stone is one of the most eraliest objects used by human being for making tools, shelter, and fulfilling some of his needs.
Although today rocks have been replaced by other construction materials, due to their weight, transportation problems and hard process of extraction, they have still preserved their position in building bridges or tunnels. Furthermore, using decorative stones in building facades has a high status in the industry of construction.
Extraction and usage of stones in Iran has a long history. Ancient Iranians in the early centuries of formation of their civilization used stones for constructing and decorating their buildings.
The traces left from houses dating back to seven thousand years ago represent the usage of stone in this vast land.
Ancient edifices like the Persepolis and Pasargad in Fars Province and Pol-e Shekasteh (Pol-e Shapoori) in Lorestan Province tell us how old the usage of stones has been in Iran.
Today, with the reserves of four billion tons of decorative stones, Iran is among the 10 first countries in stone industry; but given all types of stones, Iran ranks fourth in stone reserves.
It is also among the richest countries regarding the possession of various construction stones.
This is while some European and Asian countries have no prominent activity in the stone market due to the lack of significant stone reserve in their lands.
As a matter of fact, it is the Iranian stones’ variety of color, design and high quality that have placed Iran in the first rank.
There are more than one hundred types of construction and decorative stones in Iran’s mines. Many of the Iranian provinces including Isfahan, Yazd, Kerman, Khorasan Razavi and Southern Khorasan, Fars, Kurdistan, East Azerbaijan, West Azerbaijan and Lorestan are rich in mines.
Different factors are effective in giving high quality to a stone. For example, a stone should be able to endure physical and chemical conditions of the environment and be resistant against sunshine, wind, sudden change of temperature, freezing weather, etc. A high quality stone has no crack, streak or any sign of decay on it.
Such type of stone is clean and smooth with a uniform color and is devoid of any contamination by natural and artificial material.
In order to prepare the stones for usage, we should consider different stages including discovery, extraction, transfer, cutting and polishing.
Large pieces of rocks extracted from mines are cut based on the kind of their usage in the future.
For instance, the uncut stone extracted from a mine with no specific shape is used for filling the gaps between other stones. Or in other cases, if the stone gets a more orderly cut, it can be used for making blocks and floors.
Travertine is a sedimentary stone, with huge reserves in Iran. Iranian travertine with its unique texture, exotic color and pattern is in great demand in the top markets of Eurozone countries and the US.
Regarding some rare types of Iranian travertine, the best example is Azarshahr travertine in light yellow, light brown and red which is considered as a luxurious expensive stone.
In terms of reserves, design diversity, color, and texture, Iranian marble is considered a privilege in Iran’s export of dimensional stones.
Some of the unique Iranian marbles such as Dehbid is unique in terms of solidity, and elegance in color and pattern.
Iran is traditionally known for its marble and travertine; but, for the recent years, tremendous reserves of high-quality granites have been discovered and exploited. Iranian granites appear in different colors such as red, black, green and pink.
Because of its hardness and durability, granite is mainly used in exterior spaces.
In recent years, the Iranian stone industry has remarkably developed in different aspects.
The establishment of latest technology and machinery in some new factories has improved the stone processing.
Presence of many companies, machinery and equipment manufacturers, in domestic and foreign stone market, has resulted in creating 100.000 jobs in the stone industry which shows its significant role in Iran's economy.