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- archaology / chemistry
- A class of silicate and aluminosilicate minerals with sheet-like structures that have enormous surface areas that can absorb large amounts of water.
- An extremely fine-grained natural earthy material composed primarily of hydrous aluminum silicates. It may be a mixture of clay minerals and small amounts of nonclay materials or it may be predominantly one clay mineral. The type is determined by the predominant clay mineral. Clay is plastic when sufficiently pulverized and wetted, rigid when dry, and vitreous when fired to a sufficiently high temperature. See also: clay mineral; fireclay; bentonite. ASTM
Source: Dictionary of Mining, Mineral, and Related Terms