Technology and Research

TECHNOLOGY

The Stone Italiana product range is the result of a leading-edge controlled manufacturing process that is aimed to achieve products suitable for special applications in the building industry. These products consist of a composite material, mostly quartz- or marble- based. The manufacturing process begins by mixing a combination of raw materials (quartz or marble) in various grain sizes (from fine dust up to 5 to 6 mm grit), organic dyes and structural polyester resin (7% approximately).

Besides acting as a binder, the latter allows for a finished product that displays excellent characteristics in terms of flexural strength, impact strength and low absorption coefficient and that features physical properties and performance levels well above those of the raw materials. The polyester resin is heat cured and, through a computerised industrial process of vibrocompression under vacuum at high pressure, it permits the manufacture of large format slabs (120 x 120 cm and 140 x 305 cm) in various thicknesses (1-, 1.3-, 2- and 3-cm thick), suited for a wide range of applications.

The processing cycle envisages the production of individual slabs, thereby eliminating the need for difficult and costly block cutting operations, which are typical of all natural stones. The raw materials are first mixed and homogenised via computerised control units. The resulting mix is then poured – in the amount needed to get the desired thickness – between two paper sheets placed on a conveyor belt that delivers the product to the compaction area, where the mix is pressed into slabs.

ach slab is then cured in a curing chamber that consists of a tower-like structure with a number of heating trays, which are kept at a temperature in the region of 80 to 85°C. Through heat treatment, the mixture pressed into a slab will solidify in approximately 30 to 40 minutes, that is, half of the time required by an entire slab production cycle. Finally, each slab is processed to the desired finish through a number of steps including surface smoothing, calibrating, polishing, trimming, bevelling and edge work, depending on the intended use. Stone Italiana finished slabs can be supplied in very large quantities with controlled, quality-assured features, such as consistency in weight, thickness and compactness and uniform design and colour of the exposed surface.

CUSTOMIZED SOLUTIONS

Stone Italiana has always been committed to research and innovation and is always ready to take up new challenges. Our creative research process has come to be recognised as a laboratory of ideas, which is used by architects, developers and designers who wish to experiment with new aesthetic solutions and which, in turn, receives nourishment from them. Thus, we chose to share our design message with them and to work with them at developing special colour shades and mixture grades, innovative inserts and textures and exclusive combinations of materials. Typical examples of this approach are the floors that we developed for Armani, Chloé, Pucci, Benetton, Fendi, Trussardi, Swatch and Deutsche Bank, just to name a few.