Similarly, staurolite is separated from heavy mineral concentrate in the dry mill at Chandala.
Staurolite is a relatively hard, inert mineral with similar properties to garnet, making it suitable as an abrasive sand blasting media. In this application it is directed at a metal surface using compressed air through a nozzle, so that the grains of staurolite cut through and remove any paint, rust or other residual coatings. The cleaned surface is then ready for painting or welding as part of industrial plant maintenance and construction activities.
The abrasive nature of staurolite allows it to be used as a cutting media for water jet cutting, where the mineral is sprayed in a fine jet of water at high pressure so that, for example, it cuts through a sheet of metal. The resulting edge is very smooth and the cutting itself can be moved via a robotic arm to follow a template or pattern. This allows the cutting of quite intricate shapes from sheets of glass, metal, plastic, stone or other materials.