The Most Common Questions About Mica

What is Mica?

 Mica is a naturally occurring mineral that  comes from the ground in rough, rock like blocks.  Mica is nature's most  perfect insulation. It provides outstanding insulation and withstands  extremely hostile environments. Arcing will not cause carbon tracking,  it withstands temperatures to 1200 Deg. Fahrenheit ( 649 Deg. C) for muscovite and  1800 Deg. Fahrenheit (982 Deg. C.) for phologopite. It is relatively unaffected by  changes in humidity, pressure or heat. 

What is Muscovite and Phologopite?

These are the two main types of mica used for producing parts;  Muscovite and Phologopite.  Muscovite mica is the most commonly used of the two.   

What size does natural mica come in?

Natural mica comes out of the ground in  pieces that look like rocks.  They must be split open and then the rough  areas must be cut away.  Most of what we deal with  only has a usable  area of 4-6 inches (100-150mm).  While larger pieces are available the  cost goes up exponentially with the size. 

Where does natural mica come from?

The short answer is; it is a naturally  occurring mineral that comes out of the ground.  Most of the natural  mica used for parts comes from India.  The reason is because of the  mineral veins of mica run close to the surface in India while in North  America the mineral veins tend to be a hard rock deep, narrow shaft  mining which makes it more economical to import.   

What is the shelf life for mica?

Mica is relatively unaffected by time.   It  is a mineral and has no expiration date and unless damaged by impact  can last in the post-manufactured form indefinitely. 

Why is mica not used more in production?

Mica was the original material in many  applications.  One of the reasons it is not found more commonly is the  design engineers are not familiar with the material because it is not  considered a cutting edge material; even though it is millions of years  old and is superior in many ways to more expensive, manmade materials.