Volga Blue Granite
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Synonyms: Blu Polare, Blu Volga, Blue Polar, Blue Polare, Blue Polare Volga, Blue Polare Wolga, Blue Volga, Blue Wolga, Polar Blue, Polare Blue, Rasputin, Russischer Labrador, Volga, Volga Blue, Volhynia
Location: Volga Blue granite is quarried near Golovinske, Zhitomir region, Ukraine. There are several different Volga Blue quarries all producing slightly different colours and veining.
Description: Volga Blue granite, a Labradorite, is a very coarse-grained, dark blue-grey anorthosite often with bright blue iridescent relectors. This stone internationally may be nominated as a granite but in the area of application of the European Standard this stone must be nominated as an anorthosite.
The veining and colour varies considerably and a small sample of Volga Blue granite may not be representative of the whole slab therefore swatch samples must be approved for large projects to ensure that the blocks are all extracted from the same quarry face for matching purposes. Ideal for both interior and exterior use, Volga Blue granite is frost free and polish constant.
Volga Blue granite can be a very problematical granite to process and may need resining and glassfibre backing.
Mineral Composition: Plagioclase: 85%, Quartz: 7%, Pyroxene: 3%, Orthoclase: 3%, Biotite: 1%, Accessories: 1%
Technical and Physical Characteristics:
Compression tensile strength: 1993 kg/cm2
Tensile strength after freeze-thaw cycles: 1590 kg/cm2
Unitary modulus of bending tensile strength: 111 kg/cm2
Water imbibition coefficient: 0,002250
Mass by unit of volume: 2623 kg/m3
Anorthosite: A phaneritic, intrusive igneous rock characterized by a predominance of plagioclase feldspar (90-100%), and a minimal mafic component (0-10%). Pyroxene, ilmenite, magnetite, and olivine are the mafic minerals most commonly present.
Labradorite: This occurs in mafic igneous rocks and is the feldspar variety most common in basalt and gabbro. The uncommon anorthosite bodies are composed almost entirely of labradorite. It also is found in metamorphic amphibolites and as a detrital component of some sediments. Common mineral associates in igneous rocks include olivine, pyroxenes, amphiboles and magnetite.
Labradorescence: This is a side-effect of the molecular change which occurs in large crystal masses of anorthosite, producing an iridescent play of colors. This labradorescence, or schiller effect, is the result of light diffraction within the lamellar intergrowths – fine, adjacent layers of the separate materials (lamellae) comprising the whole rock phase – created when conditions do not allow for sufficient diffusion to the materials' equilibrium composition.