The name kaolin derives from the Chinese and means high ridge.  High ridge is a reference to the hill in south-eastern China where the clay was originally discovered and used. Kaolin, or China clay, is nearly white in color.  It is distinguished from other industrial clays based on its fine particle size and pure coloring.  Its ability to disperse in water make it an ideal pigment. The primary constituent in kaolin is the mineral kaolinite, a hydrous aluminum silicate formed by the decomposition of minerals such as feldspar. The white color of the mineral can either be naturally occurring or can result after processing which removes minerals and other color bearing compounds.  The small particle size of the mineral contributes to its white color by scattering light. Kaolin is a unique industrial mineral because it is chemically inert over a relatively wide pH range … is white or near white; has a good covering or hiding power when used as a pigment or extender in coating and filling. Although kaolin is found throughout the world, deposits with suitable whiteness, viscosity and other favorable characteristics are rare. Kaolin is a layered silicate mineral. Kaolin is used in ceramics, medicine, coated paper, as a food additive, in toothpaste, as a light diffusing material in white incandescent light bulbs, and in cosmetics. The primary use of kaolin is in the paper industry.  It serves as a paper coating which improves appearance by contributing to brightness, smoothness and gloss.  It also improves printability. Kaolin serves as a valuable component in china and other tablewares. Its color, gloss and hardness are ideal characteristics for such products. The unique chemical properties of Kaolin haven given its magic use in the porcelain industry, where its high temperature and white burning characteristics make it particularly suitable for the manufacture of porcelain.

Vornaco Kaolin Analysis