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What Are Lightweight Stones?

What Are Lightweight Stones?

Natural stones embody the beauty and elegance we wish our places to have. The problem is they can be very heavy; thus, other challenges arise.

But what if we tell you that there are lightweight stones?

Lightweight stones are thin sheets of natural stones attached to sturdy materials, such as an aluminum honeycomb, using aerospace epoxy.

lightweight stone with aluminum honeycomb

In this article, we will learn more about lightweight stones such as:

  • what they are made of;
  • what materials we use to combine natural stones with and;
  • where lightweight stones are applicable to use.

Everything About Lightweight Stone Composite

Before anything else, let us clear the confusion in this matter. We all hear names for lightweight stones such as stone composite and laminated stone, among many others.

There is no need to search for their difference because they are all the same, and they mean the same thing: lightweight stones.

What Lightweight Stones Are Made Of

We have mentioned that we refer to a lightweight stone as a stone composite. Composites in construction are created by putting together two materials and uniting them as one.

Although in the combination, you can still distinguish these materials in their original form as they are not chemically mixed.

The goal of making composites is to create a better material, and it will not make sense if stone composites still have the same quality as when they were separate.

We also call a lightweight stone a laminated stone because laminates are a kind of composite and the notable trait of a laminate is that we combine materials using adhesives. In Sinodec, we utilize aerospace epoxy.

Lightweights stones contain two layers:

  • natural stones as the first layer
  • backing (or the base, core) as the second layer

Natural Stones

If you’ve been reading our other articles, you will know that we swear by the quality of natural stones. Not only because we are a stone factory but because we witness its longevity, durability, and appearance.

However, the challenge is their heavy weight. This causes difficulty in transportation and installation. The cost is also higher, especially if we will use marble. While using natural stones is definitely worth it, we do offer a great alternative.

The natural stone in laminated stone composites can be reduced to as thin as 5 millimeters (mm), compared to thick slabs that measure more than 10 mm. But this will also depend on the usage and our client’s preferences.

The decrease in measurement is the same as the weight since a single panel of marble with an aluminum honeycomb base can be as light as 30 kilograms per square meter (kg/Sqm).

You can use any natural stone you want for the lightweight panels, but here are our recommendations.

  1. Onyx – What is unique about this stone is its translucent properties that don’t fade under the sun.
  • Granite – This stone is one of the hardest under the Mohs scale, which also makes it a great stone composite backing
  • Marble – The same as onyx, marble illuminates when hit by the light. Its colors and veins become deeper, especially when polished.
  • Travertine – This stone is associated with earthiness and unique swirls as patterns.
  • Limestone – We commonly use this stone on the road as a base material. Limestone has soft colors too that are also earthy, like travertine’s brown shades.
  • Sandstone – Stone composite floorings are of great quality with sandstone because it is hardwearing, although it is not as hard as granite.

Backing or Base

The backing is where we will attach the laminated stone using aerospace epoxy adhesive. The material should:

  • lessen the weight of the natural stone;
  • multiply the natural stone’s amount or utilization ratio;
  • improve flexural strength;
  • bolster impact resistance and overall strength and;
  • make the stone more customizable.

We listed our top recommendations for the base material below.

  1. Aluminum Honeycomb – This is our top recommendation because it is resistant and efficient in distributing strength in all parts because of its shape.
  • Glass – We use this if you want the light to illuminate the natural stone’s colors and patterns.
  • Ceramic – Suitable for stone composite flooring because of its hardness.
  • Granite – We use this if the back of the panel is entirely (or a significant portion of it) will be installed.

Combinations of Lightweight Stone Composite

In this article section, we will see some combinations of natural stone laminates, such as which stone is attached to a specific backing.

To note, you can choose your materials depending on your architectural preferences. These are examples of what we usually apply to our projects and what we export to our clients.

  • Marble Honeycomb Panel – This is probably our most popular lightweight stone because marble is precious, but it can be pretty expensive. An effective solution is using an aluminum honeycomb to lessen the cost and weight.
  • Glass-backed Onyx Panel – Glass is perfect for emphasizing the onyx translucent nature as the light can pass through. This can also work with marble.
  • Marble Lightweight Stone with Ceramic Backing – An excellent choice for flooring since a softer stone like marble needs a rigid base like ceramic that is also hardwearing to everyday liquid spills.
  • Marble Laminate With Granite Base – Granite is lighter than marble and less expensive, so it is another choice if we need sturdy backing. A significant portion of the latter will be hidden or installed.
  • Aluminum Polymer-backed Granite  – This is also good for internal wall cladding as this backing is thin and resistant to damaging factors like corrosion.

Where Do We Use Lightweight Stones?

Now that we know the composition of natural stone composites and some examples of their combinations, we will elaborate on where we can utilize them in building and construction.

  • Internal and External Wall Cladding – Wall claddings are non-structural protection for a building’s walls from external elements.

Natural stones are excellent protectors because of their durable nature, but covering a wide area means more cost. In this case, using lightweight stone is preferable.

  • Flooring – The floors face foot traffic and liquid spills, among many others. Using stable materials with waterproof, moisture, and humid-resistant properties effectively avoids damage or swelling.
  • Elevator Cab – Lightweight panels are often used in elevators as they are versatile in design and easy to clean.
  • Furniture – We can also build furnishings using limestone or marble laminates, such as a kitchen. A kitchen countertop made with lightweight stone will cost less than traditional stone and be more resistant to stains and liquids.


Lightweight stones, stone composite, and laminated stone all refer to the same material: natural stone sheets combined with other durable layers.

lightweight stone

Having two layers, the second one is made of a cost-effective material that will double the amount of the natural stone instead of using the entire thick and heavy slab. This will lower our expenses in purchasing, transportation, and installation.

Moreover, lightweight panels are more durable and customizable than traditional stones, making them versatile for any architectural project.

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