Nowadays, in designing a building or a building infrastructure, the choice of matierals overall is closely linked with their physical and mechanical characteristics, which bear significant weight in the engineer’s calculations towards the stability and durability of the project. Needless to say, exactly for its characteristics, porphyry tiles are used for both interior and exterior areas. Natural cleft surface porphyry tiles are not worked on the surface, they are only worked on their edges by splitting and sawing – their natural stratification does not allow to get a uniform thickness, which is therefore variable:

  • Split edges porphyry is produced by compression-splitting of irregular slabs using hydraulic presses fitted with blades suited to rough, unifinished stone. As a result, the tiles are rectangular, their sides are split, and they have slightly chamfered edges.
  • Sawn edges porphyry is produced by cutting of irregular slabs with natural cleft surface using diamond blade saws – what is more, they may also be semi-polished, especially when used for interior areas. Their edges are perpendicular to the face and they are cut at a 90° angle; their length can be either random or fixed

Setting patterns for porphyry tiles can be summarised into the following main classes:

Paving laid in parallel rows using tiles all with at least one or two sides the same and aligned joints;

Paving laid in parallel rows using tiles all with at last one side the same and staggered joints;

Paving laid in parallel rows using tiles of different size with staggered joints;

Roman paving with aligned and staggered joints

Photocredit: Porfidi srl