The paper presents results of research on the assessment of the suitability of the Wierzbka I Triassic clay raw materials, which are part of the Wierzbka deposit near Suchedniów, for the production of clinker tiles obtained by pressing. Red colour clays are often used in the production technology of clinker tiles. The high content of Fe2O3 in the composition of red clays promotes the sintering process and affects the colour of the resulting material, a typical characteristic of clinker materials. The raw materials used in this technology should have good sinterability, which guarantees a material with low water absorption, high chemical resistance and mechanical strength.
Samples of the raw materials were taken from three different depths of the deposit, and subjected to analysis as follows: chemical composition, phase composition (XRD, thermal analysis DSC/TG), sintering shrinkage, sintering curve and the characteristic temperatures. The analysis of the microstructure was determined using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The X-ray and thermal analysis of the studied clays revealed the presence of clay minerals such as: illite, kaolinite, illite/smectite, but also quartz and ferruginous minerals. There was no presence of calcium carbonate in the tested samples of the raw clay, which particularly distinguishes these materials as being suitable for use in the fast firing technology of clinker tiles. Samples of the raw materials were pressed under a pressure ranging from 21 to 42 MPa and then fired at temperatures in the range 1130 to 1220°C. The obtained sintered bodies were characterized by a high degree of sintering, an apparent density of 2.31g/cm3, an open porosity of less than 2.5% and water absorption below 1.0%. The results of this study indicate a high technological value of raw materials from the Wierzbka I deposit.