Granite is an igneous rock that is formed deep within the mantle of the earth from molten lava. It is composed of elements of quartz, mica and feldspar in varying amounts. It is naturally hard, stain resistant and scorch resistant. The material is quarried in large blocks then sliced into slabs. The slabs are then polished and some of the slabs surfaces are filled with a resin to smooth out the natural pits and fissures that occur. Slabs come in two varieties referred to as either speckled or flow patterns. These refer to the look of the material. Speckled materials have a more uniform look in terms of color and pattern while flow materials have a more varied appearance in terms of color and pattern.
Marble and its cousins, onyx, travertine, limestone and Jerusalem stone, is a sedimentary rock. This is formed under pressure by a combination of materials such as silt, plant deterius, animal skeletons and sea shells that accumulate and solidify under bodies of water over millions and millions of years. Its main component is calcium which is much softer than the materials found in granite. It is quarried and cut in much the same way as granite. It is graded on a scale from A to D which does not refer to its rarity, but rather to its content or lack of content of natural fissures and veining. The group A has the least amount of fissures while group D has the most. Group C and D marbles will generally be reinforced on the back of the slab with a fiberglass mesh screen embedded in a coat of resin. This give the slab greater structural integrity than it would otherwise possess. During the fabrication process, many marble pieces are further reinforced with metal rods to give them added strength.
Cambria is a natural quartz product. Quartz is the hardest non gem mineral in the world. Cambria is 3 times harder than granite and has four times the flexural strength. It is made by combining quartz crystals, dyes and resins to achieve a material that exhibits pure brilliance. The material has the highest degree of stain, heat and scratch resistance available in any countertop in the world. Cambria is the only countertop in the world available with Microban® anti microbial product protection. The surface is never sealed so it never needs re-sealing.