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OLYMPUS S.A. Industrial Minerals Diatomite

DIATOMITE


WHAT DIATOMITE IS

The diatomite is a sedimentary rock composed by accumulation of fossil diatoms usually mixture with clays in different concentrations. Diatoms are monocytes aquatic algae of family Bacillariophyceae, producing a hard and porous cell wall or outer layer consisting of silicon dioxide, referred as '' frustule '', and looks like tiny jewels.

They appeared at the Jurassic period (185 mil. years ago). Their name is due to their ability to multiply by dichotomy. The diatomite is based on extraction of amorphous silica from the water in order to build a strong wall of symmetrical holes. Dead diatoms are immersed in the water, accumulate and form large deposits known as diatomaceous earth.

As rock, it is mostly composed by silicon dioxide mixed with clays. The products that produced by diatomite, there are 100% natural.

It has high porosity, low density, inherent stability (chemical and thermal) and it is not contains residues of foreign components except of clay. The raw material passes a series of processes: drying, grinding and classification with air so that the final product consists mainly of silicon dioxide and mixed clays. It is practically inactive and it gives a final product of an off-white powder.

OLYMPUS S.A. Industrial Minerals Diatomite

OLYMPUS S.A. Industrial Minerals Diatomite
USAGES OF DIATOMITE
Thermal- and sound insulation
Absorbents
Component for soil improvers - Spraying
Pesticide
Source of amorphous silica in Agriculture



The diatomite structure is the one which gives the properties that make it valuable. It has a large expansion grain surface, high porosity, absorbent and thermo properties.

The clay diatomite has a wide variety of uses, and is an ingredient of many products in various fields of applications The ancient Greeks, for the first time 2,000 years ago, used diatomite in ceramics and bricks.

Light Weight Aggregates (LWA) - Thermal and acoustic insulation materials

The diatomite clay is suitable to be used for creating lightweight and insulating aggregates and lightweight insulating bricks. (See "Research & Development")

Industrial Absorbents

Because of the high surface area development of the grains and the high porosity, the diatomite is highly absorbent. So it is very useful (after firing) in the restoration of contaminated environments from industrial wastes (See "Research & Development").

Soil Conditioner

The addition of diatomite in fertilizer products increases their effectiveness. Also, as a source of amorphous silica can be very useful for soil conditioner.

OLYMPUS S.A. Industrial Minerals Diatomite

Natural Pesticide

Diatomite is used as a 100% natural pesticide for hiking insects (see laboratory results for mortality of hiking insect of in "R & D"). The mode of diatomite action as pesticide is mechanical. It adheres easily to insect bodies, as they walk, by tearing their waxy coating with its glassy structure. This results in to loose fluids of insects. So the insects are dehydrated and finally they die. The most important is that the insects are not acquire immunity to diatomite since the action is not due to any chemical substance or a chemical reaction. The fact that it is 100% natural makes it suitable and safe for spraying in agriculture, organic farming and grain storage in silo's.

OLYMPUS S.A. Industrial Minerals Diatomite

PRODUCT AVAILABILITY

The clay diatomite of our company is available in two granulometries

  • Powder -50 microns
  • Ultrafine powder-20 microns

It is available bagged in paper bags of 15Kg on pallets or in Big-Bags.

QUALITY FEATURES OF THE PRODUCT

The clay diatomite of our company is quarried in a private quarry.

The clay diatomite of this quarry consisted by discoidal and cylindrical diatoms shells. Chemically consisted from amorphous SiO2 (Opal-A), smectite and illite. The diatomite ratio to clays is ~ 60/40. After the milling and the air separation of the product the ratio exceed 75/25.

Qualitatively, our product is suitable for both thermal and sound insulating building blocks, for lightweight aggregates (LWA) and for industrial absorbents as it confirmed by studies in a semi-industrial scale (pilot plant, see "R & D").

Further researches have indicate the possible application of ultrafine product of -20 microns as pesticide for hiking insects in silo etc. and for foliage sprays as well as component in soil fertilizers and generally as a source of absorbable amorphous silica for agricultural applications.

In the "Research & Development" section of our web site, you can find more details on both the quality of our materials and the research which carried out by our company.

RESEARCH

Olympus SA is one of the few companies of the sector working intensely in the research upon the uses of Greek diatomite. More details concerning to the research that carried out by Olympus SA onto the diatomite can be found in the "Research & Development" section of our web site.