Basalt is a solid, compact igneous rock which is formed when volcanic lava cools adequately to solidify, covering many parts of the Globe. It is mainly used as a crushed rock in building and highway engineering.
Both the staple and continuous type of fibres can be manufactured from basalt rocks. Basalt fibres have excellent mechanical, chemical and thermal properties.
They are highly resistant to alkalis, acids, salt attack, oxidation and radiation. Basalt fibres are most suitable for concrete reinforcement, bridge and shoreline structures.
Basalt-based composites off er better performance than steel and all known reinforced plastics (1 kg of basalt reinforcement equals 9.6 kg of steel). Basalt fibre are also fulfilling the concept of sustainable design and green building. In various applications, basalt fibres are replacing various high-performance fibres, e.g. asbestos, glass, aramid and carbon fibres.
Recently, continuous basalt fibres have become attractive for electro-technical purposes as an nsulation material and a natural flame retardant. An attempt has been made to provide a comprehensive review covering the basalt fibre manufacturing process, the eco-friendly building system, prime fibre properties, products and its ubiquitous application.
Madan Lal Regar, Akhtarul Islam Amjad
Dr. B. R. Ambedkar National Institute of Technology, Jalandhar, Punjab 144011, India