Dimension stone resources

Mitchell, Clive; Linley, Kathrine. 2012 Dimension stone resources. 1:100 000 scale geological map series. British Geological Survey.

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Dimension stone in the UAE This map shows the rock units of the northern United Arab Emirates (UAE) that potentially are a source of dimension stone. The distribution of the rock units is from the 1:50 000 scale geological maps produced by the UAE Ministry of Energy (Styles et al, 2008) Their potential as dimension stone is based on assessment of outcrops and samples, the location of which are shown on the map (triangle symbol). This assessment should not be used to assume that all rock in each geological unit is of suitable quality for dimension stone. Dimension stone covers a wide variety of highly polished, naturally occurring stones used for the external cladding, structural components and internal decoration of buildings. Rock types used include igneous (granite, gabbro, porphyry, basalt and serpentine), metamorphic (marble, gneiss and slate) and sedimentary (sandstone, limestone and travertine). The UAE has a thriving dimension stone industry that relies on stone mainly imported from India, Saudi Arabia, Spain, China, Oman, Italy, Iran, Turkey, Greece and Pakistan. In 2008, the UAE imported over 200,000 tonnes of dimension stone valued at over US$42 million. There is currently no significant production of dimension stone from quarries in the UAE. Historically, the architecture of the UAE has many different influences including Greek, Persian, Portuguese, Indian and British. Traditionally, local construction materials used in buildings include coral, gypsum, mud bricks, stone, wood and thatch. Modern day architecture in the UAE is dominated by prestige building projects which make use of dimension stone from across the world including Crema Marfil (beige-coloured limestone from Spain), Carrara Bianco (white marble from Italy), Rosso Levanto (red serpentinite from Italy), Galaxy Black (black gabbro anorthosite from India) and Emperadore Dark (brecciated dolomite from Spain). How this map was created This map is the result of a study carried out by the British Geological Survey (BGS) to identify rocks that might be used for the production of dimension stone based on knowledge of the geology of the northern Emirates of the UAE (Styles et al, 2008). The study area includes the carbonate rocks mainly to east of Ras Al Khaimah and the igneous rocks of the Oman-UAE ophiolite mainly to the west of Fujairah. In total, the suitability of rocks at 31 sites (triangle symbol on map) was assessed. This assessment was based on the following criteria: • the likelihood of extracting blocks larger than 1 metre square. This was determined from the density of discontinuities such as bedding planes, joints, fractures, faults and any other planes of weakness that may lead to the breakup of the stone when extracted; • the technical properties of the stone which indicate if it can be used without breaking up during extraction, transport, processing and use. These include compressive strength, density, water absorption and porosity (as shown for each rock unit in Table 1); • the appearance of the stone when cut and polished. A representative image of each sample from the sites with high potential for the production of dimension stones is shown in photographs 1 to 12; • the accessibility of the site, the likelihood of quarrying and the potential for the production of industrial by-products from the production waste Each site was classified as having high, medium or low potential for the production of dimension stone (Table 1). Of the sites assessed, 12 were classified as having high potential for producing dimension stone and these are indicated on the map with a red triangle. The sites with moderate or low potential for production of dimension stone are indicated on the map with a black triangle. This map was produced as part of the study of the ‘Dimension stone resources of the UAE’ which was carried out in 2010 to 2011 and was funded by the UAE Ministry of Energy. Full details of the dimension stone study are available from the Ministry of Energy (Mitchell et al, 2012).

Item Type: Publication - Map
Programmes: BGS Programmes 2010 > BGS Corporate
Scale: 1:100,000
Geographical Extent: Northern Emirates, UAE
Projection: Nahrwan 1967
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: This item can be purchased from Ministry of Energy Department of Geology and Mineral Resources
Additional Keywords: dimension stone, building stone, decorative stone, polished stone, limestone, marble, gabbro, granite, United Arab Emirates, industrial minerals
NORA Subject Terms: Earth Sciences
Date made live: 31 Aug 2012 12:04 +0 (UTC)

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