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Asbestos is a set of six naturally occurring silicate minerals, which all have in common their asbestiform habit i.e., long roughly aspect ratio , thin fibrous crystals, with each visible fiber composed of millions of microscopic "fibrils" that can be released by abrasion and other processes. The minerals are chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite, tremolite, anthophyllite, and actinolite..
Friable asbestos products have been commonly used in commercial and industrial settings since the late s for fireproofing, soundproofing and insulation..
History of Asbestos Insulation. Asbestos has been used since ancient times to make fireproof cloth for the burial shrouds of kings and the tablecloths of wealthy landholders, but the modern asbestos industry did not arise until the machinery of the Industrial Revolution created a great need for insulation materials..
Identifying Asbestos. Asbestos. The name has it's origin in the Greek word for inextinguishable. A highly effective and inexpensive fire retardant material and thermal and acoustic insulator, asbestos was used extensively in home construction from the early s through the s..