Continental Trade Sp. z o. o.


Mica flakes classification

Natural mica can be transformed into coarse, medium and fine varieties of flakes and powder by the process of pulverization and thereby it renders itself to wide commercial applications in these forms.

The table presented below is showing some applications of flakes of mica or ground mica depending on the degree of fragmentation.

Applications by the size of flakes



Sieve sizeUsesPurposes
Coarse Flakes 3,36 6 Mesh oil well drilling overcome lost circulation, as a mud additive
pearlescent pigments to provide pearly luster in paints and other articles
artificial snow as snow substitute
Medium Coarse Flakes 1,68 10 Mesh Christmas ornaments and display materials as flocking material and to provide glittering effects
Fine Coarse Flakes 1,0 16 Mesh concrete block fillers, refractory bricks, gypsum boards, slabs, tiles reinforced structures provide thermal insulation, fire resistance, sound absorption, corrosion protection
asphalt roofing felts, shingles as a protective coating and provides weather-proofing
Coarse Fine Powder 0,55 30 Mesh explosives and disinfectant as a filler or an absorbent
automotive components as soundproofing mats and pastes
Medium Fine Powder 0,25 60 Mesh welding electrodes, cables and wires as protective coatings and improves dielectric properties, electrical and mechanical strength
foundry works, pipeline, enamels, mastics, body lubricants, adhesive improves physical properties, anti-sag, reduce cracking
Fine Powder 0,15 100 Mesh texture paints
acoustical plasters
ceiling tiles
improves physical properties, architectural durability. adhesion. water proofing
Superfine Powder 0,04 325 Mesh paints improves exterior durability, increase moisture resistance, flexibility, adhesion, etc.
plastics improves thermal and dielectric properties, impact strength, imparts heat resistance
rubber products including automotive tyres prevents adhesion of rubber compound to the cores and outer sheaths during vulcanization
paper provides stiffness, lower density and higher permeability
cosmetics powders and fluids

The process of sorting flakes and powder (ground mica) into individual fractions is carried out using sieves of different mesh sizes.

Commercially, as a criterion of the flakes size the number of screen or mesh-scale are used, often millimeters or inches are used. Below is shown a table that allows you to convert various size scales of mica flakes.

Converting mesh into mm and inches

Mesh Size Microns Mm Mils Inches
4 4760 4,76 187,5 0,1875
6 3360 3,36 152,3 0,1523
8 2380 2,38 93,7 0,0937
10 1680 1,68 66,1 0,0937
12 1410 1,41 55,5 0,0555
14 1190 1,19 46,8 0,0468
16 1000 1 33 0,0333
20 840 0,84 33,1 0,0331
24 710 0,71 27,9 0,0279
28 590 0,59 23,2 0,0232
32 500 0,5 19,7 0,0197
35 420 0,42 16,5 0,0165
42 350 0,35 13,7 0,0137
48 297 0,297 11,7 0,0117
60 250 0,25 9,8 0,0098
65 210 0,021 6,9 0,0069
80 177 0,177 5,9 0,0059
100 149 0,149 4,9 0,0049
115 125 0,125 4,1 0,0041
150 105 0,105 3,4 0,0034
170 88 0,088 2,9 0,0029
200 74 0,074 2,4 0,0024
250 62 0,062 2,1 0,0021
270 53 0,053 1,7 0,0017
325 44 0,044 1,2 0,0012
400 37 0,037    
477 31 0,031    
565 26,2 0,026    
673 22 0,22    
800 18,5 0,019    
949 15,6 0,016    
1346 11 0,011    
1590 9,3 0,0093    
1898 7,8 0,0078    
2280 6,5 0,0065    
2690 5,5 0,0055    
3200 4,6 0,0046    
3800 3,9 0,0039    
4480 3,3 0,0033    
5280 2,8 0,0028    
6430 2,3 0,0023    
7590 1,95 0,00195    
9030 1,65 0,00165    
10730 1,38 0,00138    
12780 1,16 0,00116    
18000 0,82 0,00082    
Understanding Mesh Sizes

What does mesh size mean?  

Figuring out mesh sizes is simple. All you do is count the number of openings in one inch of screen (the number of openings in a lineal inch measured from the center of one wire to a point one inch distant).  The number of openings is the mesh size.  So a 4-mesh screen means there are four little squares across one linear inch of screen (see fig.).  As the number describing the mesh size increases, the size of the particles decreases.   Higher numbers equal finer material.  Mesh size is not a precise measurement of particle size.

What do the minus (-) and plus (+) plus signs mean when describing mesh sizes?  

Here's the explanation:  

  • -200 mesh means that you need all particles that pass through a 200 mesh,
  • +200 mesh means, that you need all particles that remain on the sieve of 200 mesh.

If you needed a ground mica that was closer to size you would need to specify two mesh sizes. For example: ground mica -40+100 Mesh. This mica powder would have particles that were smaller than 40 mesh (420 micron) but larger than 100 Mesh (149 micron).  The customer receives a powder having a particle passed through the 40 mesh screen but was trapped in the 100 mesh screen. Rejected are larger particles (were trapped above in the 40 mesh screen) and smaller particles (passed through the 100 mesh screen). 

How fine do screens get?  

That depends on the wire thickness.  If you think about it, the finer the weave, the closer the wires get together, eventually leaving no space between them at all. For this reason, beyond 325-mesh particle size is usually described in “microns.”

While every attempt has been made to verify the source of the information, no responsibility is accepted for accuracy of data.

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