DR JEREMY BURGESS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR JEREMY BURGESS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
False-colour scanning electron micrograph of fibres of blue asbestos, or crocidolite. All asbestos varieties are silicates (amphibole minerals), the most common being crocidolite, amosite and chrysotile. Asbestos fibres can be compressed, felted or woven to make insulating boards, paper & shingles. It is widely used in the construction industry because of its fireproof and insulating properties, while its resistance to corrosion makes it attractive to the chemical and process industries. If the smaller fibres are inhaled in quantity they lodge in the lung causing the respiratory disease asbestosis. Magnification: x60 at 6x7cm size.
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