What are the different types of asbestos? Asbestos are six fibrous minerals that are group together as they all occur in metamorphic deposits that are located worldwide. There are types of asbestos. They are chemically inert. They are fire resistant too. Asbestos is known to not to conduct heat as well as electricity. This is why asbestos is commonly used as an insulator. The most common types of asbestos are the tremolite asbestos, actinolite asbestos, anthophyllite asbestos, chrysotile asbestos, amosite asbestos, and the crocidolite asbestos.
Tremolite. Tremolite asbestos are among the types of asbestos that are not industrially or commercially used. These are usually found in limited amounts in certain products such as talcum powders. Tremolite asbestos happens as results of calcium and magnesium rich sedimentary rocks that went through metamorphism. Other minerals that contributed in the formation of these types of asbestos include calcite, grossular, dolomite, wollastonite, forsterite, and many others.
Actinolite asbestos, on the other hand, is also not used commercially and industrially. This is because these types of asbestos are easily inhaled. When these types of asbestos get airborne, they can cause severe damage to the lungs. These kinds of asbestos are most frequently seen in metamorphic rocks and are products of magnesium rich limestone that underwent metamorphism.
Anthophyllite. The anthophyllite types of asbestos are much like the first two types of asbestos – they are not commercially or industrially used. Also, they are known to be products of magnesium rich rocks that underwent metamorphism as well. But generally, these types of asbestos are formed when the talc in ultramafic rocks break down. They are mostly found in Finland and Japan.
Chrysotiles, or the white asbestos, are types of asbestos that are very unique. They are known for their serpentine like fiber formation. This means that their fibers are curled – unlike the other types that have straight and needle like fibers. They are less likely friable, meaning there is only a little change for them to be inhaled. Compared to the other kinds of asbestos, these are known to be the safest. The hardness of this type is known to be somewhat like that of a finger nail. Even when they have curled fibers, they still have others that can be as long as 10 centimeters. They are known to have tensile strength too, making them able to be spun or woven. Much like the other types, these are also heat and electricity resistant making them great insulators of heat and electricity.
Amosite. The Amosite asbestos is also known as the brown asbestos or grunerite. They are known to originate in Africa. The name amosite originated from the term Amosa, which is an acronym for Asbestos Mines Of South Africa. The crystals of this asbestos type are monoclinic, while their lusters are glassy with colors such as green, dark grey or brown.
Crocidolites are the blue asbestos. Much like the other types, these can also be found in Australia and Africa. These are known to be amphibole minerals that are location specific. They are also known to be quite dangerous as well.