There is no question of stone‘s durability in pavements, demonstrated by the numerous architectural remains that were constructed from this products. Natural stone pavings for outdoor use have many advantages: beauty, durability and design possibilities.
Natural stone properties lead to a number of benefits, some of which are cited below:
EXCELENT PHYSICAL PROPERTIES
The high level of resistance to stone compression, in particular granite, makes it an extremely strong and consistent construction material. Its resistance is a priority in terms of durability for a pavement destined for vehicle traffic.
Natural stone has an A1 class rating for its fire performance, classifying the material as «non-combustible, with no reaction even at the highest degree of fire».
Stone is the only construction material that remains as it was when it was first extracted from nature, without any chemical changes made to its structure or composition.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF TEXTURES
Achieved though several surface finishes that not only affect the aesthetic end result of the pavement but also improve certain technological features such as slippness.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF FORMATS AND COLORS
Among all the products used for paving, natural stone is the one that can offer the greatest formats. It is essential to perform laboratory tests to evaluate stone behaviour and its suitability as pavement.
LOW MAINTENANCE COSTS
Natural stone is not more expensive than other products if we consider the total costs of construction. Investments costs are offset by a low maintenance cost and a long service life.
Natural stone is becoming a product widely used in contemporary construction today. Thanks to modern industrial techniques, it opens up a great number of possibilities for architectural design.
The manufacture of natural stone clearly requires less energy consumption than many other materials. The fact that stone is a natural product already makes it easier to extract and involves much simpler manufacturing processes. From this point of view, natural stone is characterized by its sustainability, durability, lower energy consumption in its production, possibility of recycle and easy disposal owing to being inert waste.
A suitable structural base is essential
In selecting a natural stone for pavement, it is essential to take into account the different variables that affect use and design. Depth must affect slab thickness and adherence material, and width should be, at least, 10 mm. In general, the maximum surface area that must be coated between division joints is 50 m2 or a maximum size of 8 lineal meters.
The structural base is one of the most important parts of pavement, given that it forms the structural support level. The use of sand as support layer for flagstone pavement is limited to pedestrian recreational spaces, such as parks and gardens, and pavements in sparsely populated areas with reduced pedestrian traffic.
Most of problems that occur in stone pavements are caused by incorrect placement of material, poorly developed or badly executed designs and to a lesser extent due to the material used.
For further information, check CUPA STONE website.