Georgia is rich in metalliferous and non-metalliferous deposits, mineral and fresh water basins and ore manifestations; facing and industrial stones occupy special place among them. Our country has great experience in mining and processing of them. This material has been widely applied in both secular and religious buildings.
In 80-es of the last century there was mined 1.5mln.m3 facing stone: the Bolnisi tuff, Marneuli basalt, Kursebi teschenite, Salieti marble, Eklari limestone etc.; they were applied in producing blocks, plates, steps of stairs, decorative gravel etc. most of that was exported..
At present the mining and processing of facing stones (except of few cases) is occasional. Only several producers manage to fulfill very few, generally local, orders. The country looses significant contributions, local people are unemployed; there is practically no mechanism for suggesting these material values to the market while the inner consumer market is oversaturated with low quality and cheep (Chinese, Iranian, Greek) facing stones. In Georgia there are known more than 360 deposits and ore manifestations and their total value in the bowels of the earth reaches about 20 billion USD.
Georgian stone is distinguished for its ornamentality, low radial activity and good physical-mechanical properties. It occurs in all the regions of Georgia and the significantly increased demand makes firm ground for the development of small and medium business.
The Bolnisi tuff is noteworthy among the facing stones; it is characterized by variety of kinds; the facing of the Bolnisi Sioni and Tsugrugasheni churches is the evidence of its usage in the past.
The Farkhalo tuff deposit site is built by Upper-Cretaceous and quaternary sediments. The Upper-Cretaceous one is represented by the Lower Turonian, Upper Turonian-Coniacian and Lower Santonian sediments.
The Farkhalo tuff mine, functioning since 1935, is located in the Bolnisi ore-bearing field. It is distinguished by variety of tuff considering its composition, grain kinds and color: homogeneous, greenish tuff-breccia, decorative tuffs.
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