Dimension stone petrography is performed to assess the characteristics of stone that has been proposed for architectural use and to evaluate the causes of distress and aesthetic issues that occur in service. Distress may include spalling, cracking, crumbling, and delamination. Aesthetic issues may include staining, color change, pitting, and crazing. Petrography may be supplemented with SEM/EDX, XRD, thermal analysis, or other procedures.
Examination to qualify stone for use is normally accompanied by other tests to ensure that the physical requirements are met. Requirements and test methods are listed in the ASTM specification for each stone type. Stone removed from service usually will not satisfy the dimensional requirements for some of these test methods