April 08, 2014
Talc is our planet's softest known mineral. All talcs are lamellar, chemically inert, organophilic and water repellent, but no two talcs are the same. Their unique properties, supply source bring added performance to a wide range of products and processes.
Unlike most of us think talc need not be of white colour always. Talc comes in several colours namely grey, green, blue, pink and for that matter even black.
Talc is a hydrated magnesium silicate. There are many types of talc and each ore body has its own features, its own geology, formed many millions of years ago. As a natural ore, talc is always found in combination with at least one other mineral. The most common of these is chlorite, a chemically and structurally similar ore. Other associated minerals often found with talc include dolomite and magnesite.
Although all talcs are lamellar, their platelet size differs from one deposit to another. Small crystals provide a compact, dense ore, known as micro-lamellar talc. Large crystals come in papery layers. This form of talc is known as macro-lamellar talc. The unique mineralogy and morphologyof each talc determines its individual properties, and confers specific functions to a particular end-use.
Present annual world talc production stands at around 5.5 million tonnes, mined from about 250 deposits scattered around the globe. The term 'talc' covers over 500 products, each distinct by its nature, by the proportion of by-minerals it contains, and by its properties.