National Minerals Information Center

Manufactured Abrasives Statistics and Information

Manufactured abrasives are made by heating or chemically treating metals or minerals to give them physical properties needed to abrade, clean, etch, grind, polish, scour, or otherwise remove material by rubbing action (as in a grinding wheel) or impact (pressure blasting). Their most important properties are hardness, toughness (rigidity), grain shape and size, character of fracture, and purity (uniformity). Additional considerations include thermal stability, bonding characteristics, cost, and availability. No single property is paramount for any use.

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