Sandstone is a sedimentary rock composed mostly of quartz sand, but it can also contain significant amounts of feldspar, and sometimes silt and clay. Sandstone that contains more than 90% quartz is called quartzose sandstone. When the sandstone contains more than 25% feldspar, it is called arkose or arkosic sandstone.
Color: Light brown or red
Sandstone is a sedimentary rock composed mostly of quartz sand, but it can also contain significant amounts of feldspar, and sometimes silt and clay. Sandstone that contains more than 90% quartz is called quartzose sandstone. When the sandstone contains more than 25% feldspar, it is called arkose or arkosic sandstone. When there is a significant amount of clay or silt, geologists refer to the rock as argillaceous sandstone. The color of sandstone varies, depending on its composition.
Argillaceous sandstones are often gray to blue. Because it is composed of light-colored minerals, sandstone is typically light tan in color. Other elements, however, create colors in the sandstone. The most common sandstones have various shades of red, caused by iron oxide (rust). In some instances, there is a purple hue caused by manganese.
Relation to Mining
Loosely consolidated material can be mined using a high-pressure hydraulic monitor. Sand washed from the working face is collected in a sump, from which it is usually pumped to a dewatering/surge pile, where the material is allowed to free drain. Once drained the sand reports to a plant.
Well-consolidated deposits can be mined using conventional drill-and-blast methods. Once blasted, the sandstone is “mucked” using a front-end loader, placed into haul trucks, and transported to a primary crusher. Following crushing, the material may report to a secondary or tertiary crushing plant. The sized material is then transported to a processing plant, usually by a conveyance system.
Sandstone has two major applications, as crushed stone and as dimension stone.
Dimension stone is any rock material that is cut into specific sizes, typically as blocks and slabs. Crushed stone is used in the construction of roadways and road structures such as bridges, and in buildings, both commercial and residential.
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