The Garnet & Mica mine of Zenober Iranian Company is located in Kerman province, 15 km from east of Sirjan city. Its communication route is from the Sirjan-Baft asphalt road, 15 kilometers long after Najaf Shahr city, and after one kilometer of the asphalt road, we reach the Garnet mine area of Zenober Iranian Company.
The amount of definite reserve calculated for this mine is 28.183 million tons of definite reserve of Garnet schist ore with an average weight percentage of 14.45% of Garnet and Mica with an average weight percentage of 27.6.
Regarding to the reserves and high potential of the Garnet & Mica mine of Zenober Iranian Company and also based on the studies and investments have been made, extraction from the reserves of this mine is planned to be followed in two medium and long term phases for Garnet and Mica.
According to the performance and approach to Zenober Iranian Company, the production capacity of Garnet will meet the 70 thousand tons per year until the end of 2023 in the short-term phase and will reach to 140 thousand tons per year in the long-term phase by the end of 2025.
Also, in the medium-term phase, Mica production will be 50 thousand tons per year until the end of 2024, and in the long-term phase, it will be 150 thousand tons per year by the end of 2025.
It is remarkable that, as well as meeting the domestic needs of the country and selfsufficiency in the import of Garnet which is required by the sandblast and waterjet industries, the Garnet & Mica mine of Zenober Iranian Company, will supply and cover 10-15% of the world’s Garnet production and Iran’s Garnet and Mica production by Zenober Iranian Company, will take a considerable market share in the long term.
The common applications and consumptions of Garnet in the industries are briefly described as following:
Common uses of Garnet for sandblasting:
In waterjet technique, the abrasives are ejected from the nozzle head in an aqueous solution with a pressure of about 55000 Psi (38.7 m.kg/m2). The size of the nozzle head depends on the materials used for cutting and the cutting conditions, but usually the opening diameter is from 0.23 mm to 2.8 mm.
Its first feature is that it does not generate sparks and provides safety in environments where there is a potential for explosion. The second feature is that it works almost without dust.
The flexibility and accuracy of the advanced automatic waterjet system makes it possible to use it in a large number of industrial factories and cut various types of materials, including steel, aluminum, plastic, wood, composite materials, glass, stone, cement, ceramic and cardboard. The global market of this industry, needs 220,000 tons of Garnet per year.
Coated abrasives are composed of graded abrasive grains that are glued on sheets of paper or fabric and are used to polish and smooth the surface of various artifacts. The main abrasives for this application are: Aluminum, Silicon carbide, Silica, Garnet. The type and size of abrasives are determined by their final use.
These days, the use of Garnet as a coated abrasive is limited to the woodworking industry, which has a market consumption of about 5000 tons per year in the United States of America.
Papers and fabrics with Garnet coating are mainly used for wood wear and also for polishing leather, hard rubber, plastic, glass and softer metals.
Finishing and polishing
Precious abrasive powders have made great progress compared to coated abrasives and are used for precise and uniform polishing of electronic parts, special glasses and other precision products. Abrasive materials that compete with this material include Diamond pieces, Silicon carbide, Aluminum slag and Silica powder.
Also, cleaning by Garnet reduced the polishing time. Garnet creates a suitable surface and is cheaper than many other abrasive materials. The weak points of using Garnet are the slow work speed and the relatively high consumption of materials. If the grains are too small, it will cause scratches on the surface and if they are too soft, it will waste the Garnet.
The types of Mica minerals have different uses, especially in the industry, which is presented in the following table, a summary of the Mica’s usage in different areas and the characteristic of the relevant index.