This glassy mineral has found its place in many an industrial
application worldwide. Starting from ceramics and refractory
tiles to a range of high-tech applications. Zircon compounds
have a very low toxicity and are not perceived as a potential
environmental hazard. They are even said to have some medicinal
properties and are now increasingly preferred in the manufacture
of food products and pharmaceuticals too.
Zircon's exceptional qualities of hardness
and durability makes it a must-use for the manufacture of
ceramics and refractory tiles and also for a range of other
high-tech applications such as armour plating on military
aircraft, heat shield in space shuttles and potentially as
solid oxide fuel cells in hydrogen powered vehicles in many
industrial and chemical applications.
The Industrial zircon ceramics are extensively
used as linings to protect furnaces and kilns for smelting
of metals because they can retain their physical and chemical
composition even when subjected to high temperatures. Zircon
application is mainly confined to mould faces and cores, which
directly come in contact with molten metal. Zircon sand helps
in minimising the penetration of mould by the molten metal
and thus ensures that the casting gets a good surface finish.
It is predominantly used as a glaze material
and as an opacifier to provide shine and brightness for crockery,
sanitary ware, Ceramic tiles, other decorative ceramic products
and is also widely used in television and computer screens.
Resistance to corrosion and erosion makes zircon products
ideal for use in the chemical industry and in desalination