The Natural Stone processing involves the transformation of extracted quarry blocks into parts and flat products of different sizes and surface finishes. To avoid breakage during the cutting and surface finishes operations, solvent-base resins are used. Currently, such resins need to be applied on a dry surface, so that the pieces need to be previously introduced in natural gas kilns. Consequently, the energy consumption in this stage is very high.
Moreover, the nature of the resins (with a content of 50-70% volatile, flammable and toxic compounds) involves the use of safety cabinets and ventilation systems enabled for a safe application as well as for the protection of employees against hazardous emissions.
Once the application of the resins has been made, they must be hardened thermally (curing process). Therefore, the flat Natural Stone products need to be placed once more into natural gas furnaces.