Information about Vermiculite and Exfoliation

VX Resources is a supplier of high-quality, asbestos-free vermiculite.

What is Vermiculite?

Vermiculite is a naturally occurring mineral that is widely used in various industries due to its unique properties.

It is a hydrated laminar magnesium-aluminium-iron silicate, with a soft and flaky texture resembling mica. Vermiculite forms through the weathering of certain types of minerals, typically biotite and phlogopite, in the presence of water.

Some vermiculite produced at the mine in Libby, Montana from the 1920s until 1990 was later found to contain asbestos. While not all vermiculite pre-1990 contained asbestos, it has become a part of the industry to check for asbestos content. Our vermiculite is independantly certified to be guaranteed asbestos-free by a reputable third party.

 

What is Exfoliation?

Because of the presence of water molecules within its structure, when vermiculite is subjected to high temperatures, the water expands and it undergoes a process known as exfoliation. The exfoliation process expands the material to many times its original size.This expanded form of vermiculite is lightweight, highly absorbent, and has excellent insulation properties. These characteristics make it useful in a wide range of applications.

Uses of Vermiculite

Some common uses of vermiculite include:

  1. Insulation: Expanded vermiculite is utilized as an insulating material in construction, especially in attics, walls, and roofs. Its lightweight nature and insulating properties enable it to be used in light weight building material and reduce heat transfer and increase energy efficiency. 
  2. Horticulture: Vermiculite is a popular component in potting mixes and soil amendments. It improves soil aeration, water retention, and nutrient absorption, making it beneficial for plant growth and root development. 
  3. Fireproofing and Flame Retardancy: Due to its ability to withstand high temperatures and insulate against heat, vermiculite is used in fireproofing materials and as a flame retardant.
  4. Packaging: The lightweight and shock-absorbing characteristics of expanded vermiculite make it suitable for packaging delicate and fragile items, such as electronics, appliances, and glassware.
  5. Animal Care: Vermiculite is used in animal bedding, particularly for reptiles and amphibians, as it provides a soft and moisture-absorbent substrate.

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670 Charles Street North
Gananoque, Ontario, Canada
K7G 2W5

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