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The Advantages of Stone Composite Panels

The Advantages of Stone Composite Panels

Stone composite panels are essential in civil engineering and benefit mechanical engineering and architecture. These stone laminates serve many purposes, but we prefer using them as exterior wall cladding and flooring.

This material has many advantages, such as being lightweight, extra durable, customizable, and cost-efficient.

In this article, we will discover in detail the pros of laminated stone panels. It will help us decide whether they are the right choice for our wall cladding or flooring.

Pros of Stone Composite Panels

1. Durable

To do a quick review, stone composite panels or lightweight stones are composed of the following:

  • natural stone sheet such as onyx, granite, limestone, marble, or travertine (1st layer)
  • backing or base made of aluminum honeycomb, glass, ceramic, or granite (2nd layer)

Natural stones are inherently durable despite being thin sheets. For example, a marble’s thickness in millimeters in stone laminates can be just 5 mm.

However, the natural stone we will use will still embody its characteristics traditionally, such as resistance to heat, weathering, cracks, and beauty.

These qualities will therefore combine with the other layers, such as aluminum, honeycomb, glass, or ceramic, which are notable for their sturdiness and impact resistance. Together, the panel is an entirely different material with upgraded sturdiness.

So even if the natural stone suffered an impact that resulted in cracks, the laminated stone panel will still be intact and held together because that stone is just the top layer.

2. Lightweight

As a veteran stone factory of over ten years, this is the advantage of stone composite panels that often convince our clients to use them for their projects.

There is nothing negative about using whole stone in wall claddings or floorings, but the downside is the heavyweight that will need more manpower to carry. The installation with traditional stones is also more complicated.

This is the reason why laminated stones received the name “lightweight stone,” among many others.

This laminated marble with aluminum honeycomb backing has natural marble that is only around 5 mm thick, which can also vary depending on client specifications. The weight? A magical 30 kilograms per square meter (kg/Sqm).

3. Heat and Fire Resistant

Aluminum, glass, ceramic, and granite have a specific resistance to heat and fire.

We listed the temperature measurement where these materials in a laminated stone will take a heat toll.

  • aluminum – different alloys have different melting points, but mostly 660.3°C or 1,221°F
  • laminated glass – since this will have two layers, the fire rating will depend on the type of glass we will use as plies
  • ceramic – it will depend on the pureness of the ceramic, but mostly 1,600°C or 2,912°F
  • granite – 249°C or 480°F

As we always say, lightweight stones will rarely be subject to this temperature, even if you live in a hot climate. In terms of fire, it will take a long time before they catch it.

beige travertine combined with aluminum honeycomb panel

However, be careful with sudden temperature changes as they might affect the panels.

4. Water Resistant

Lightweight stones are water resistant and are therefore not affected by moisture.

This is an essential characteristic of exterior wall cladding because it will face challenges from natural elements such as rain and snow. We don’t have to worry about occasional spills with stone composite flooring other than wiping them immediately.

5. Customizable

Stone composite panels are highly customizable compared to traditional stones. If we are going to install exterior wall claddings with complex designs and shapes, we will opt to use laminated limestone or granite for the project.

An example is an aluminum honeycomb panel. Provided that we have the right tools and equipment, this lightweight stone can easily be:

  • shaped
  • cut
  • bent

Aluminum in particular, is flexible and malleable, hence this benefit. That is why architects prefer using stone composites for unique projects that require lots of customization.

Aluminum Honeycomb-Backed Curved Marble Stone Panel

6. Good Thermal Insulator

Natural stones are great insulators, but what more when combined with materials we use for laminated stone panels?

One of the many strengths of stone composites is their capability to contain the warm or cool inside a room because they reflect or absorb the temperature outside.

Lightweight stone should be the go if you’re looking for a material for interior and exterior wall cladding.

And if we want to have laminated stone flooring, this will benefit us by not burning our feet, especially if we live in places with a tropical climate.

7. Resistance to Weathering

Weathering is where natural elements break down or dissolve rocks; this is one of the enemies of traditional stones.

Of course, we know that natural stones don’t break that easily; we have numerous infrastructures and statues made with marble, limestone, and granite standing strong after more than 100 years.

However, these creations also receive high maintenance (more on this later).

Laminated stone panels have stronger resistance to weathering because the backing is made of materials that water, wind, snow, and heat can’t affect.

8. Resistance to Rust

Natural stones contain iron deposits that can lead to rusting in the form of small circle patches, but this is very rare as these stones usually resist rusting. If it occurs, we can also easily clean them using stone rust removers.

When it comes to the stone composite panel’s materials for the backing, all of them have high resistance to rust. Especially aluminum honeycomb and glass; these are almost impervious to corrosion.

9. Low Maintenance

Lightweight stones such as laminated marble with aluminum honeycomb are impressively low maintenance compared to traditional stones that you need to seal and clean regularly.

We can clean stone veneer panels using mild dish soap, warm water, and a soft cloth (almost like with natural stones!). There are also cleaning solutions available in the market for these panels, and all we have to do is ask our supplier which is applicable.   

10. Low-cost

The cost is one of the things we consider if we purchase materials in bulk and arguably the second most important next to the quality. With price, there are three aspects.

1. Product Costs. Using whole natural stone slabs is beneficial for longevity but expensive, especially if you have to cover a large area. And in choosing natural stones, you have to pick the right quality, as cheap ones might not give you sustainable output.

Below is an example of the price range in the market:

  • white marble slab – $20 to $30/Sqm
  • marble with aluminum honeycomb – $10 to $40/Sqm

Of course, the comparison will depend on the kind of stone composite and the type of marble if you’re planning to use the traditional one.

2. Transportation Costs. Traditional marble, for example, is quite expensive to transport because of its fragile nature and weight. We will spend on cargo protection such as crates with straw-like protection, frames, and the like.

If you are going to import natural marble slabs, that will make the costs go higher because of the distance.

With stone composite panels that are lighter, the transportation cost is less. While we also need to take care of the material in cargo, these panels are not as fragile as traditional stones, which saves us complications.

3. Installation Costs. Installation prices will vary project per project, but one thing about laminated stone panels is that an experienced crew must install them.

The advantage here is we won’t need too much manpower compared with natural stones that are heavy and can be challenging to put up. This factor, therefore, lowers the costs of installation.

Aside from these three aspects, you will save money in the long run because of the lightweight stones’ durability and good quality that we enumerated above as well.


Stone composite panels are essential in engineering and architecture because they are lightweight, durable, and highly customizable.

Evidently, lightweight stones bear advantages that make them the best choice for external wall cladding and flooring. Their qualities make them sustainable, and the costs of acquiring laminated stone panels are also friendly to the budget.

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