20+ Differences Between Basalt And Granite

Basalt and Granite are two types of Igneous rocks. Due to their appearance, these rocks look alike. Thus, the terms Basalt and Graphite are used as synonyms and interchangeably. Basalt is of a dark color that is made up of plagioclase and pyroxene.

After coming in contact with the lava, Basalt becomes magnesium and iron-rich rock. Basalt is found near the ocean floors.

Granite, on the other hand, is of a lighter color with some redish and pinkish tint that is made up of quartz and feldspar. Granite is found above the ocean floor. 

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Key Differences –

Basalt –

  1. Basalt is a dark-colored rock rich in Iron and Magnesium. 
  2. Basalt is a fine-grained rock. 
  3. Basalt is found in the ocean as well as the Earth’s crust. 
  4. Earth’s most abundant rock is Basalt.  
  5. Basalt is used for making roads, floor tiles, monuments, etc. 

Granite –

  1. Granite is a grey-colored rock rich in quartz and feldspar. 
  2. Granite is a coarse-grained rock. 
  3. Granite is found in the continental or ground crust. 
  4. Granite is known as the best igneous rock. 
  5. Granite is used as dimension stone in buildings, monuments, kitchen slabs, etc. 

Comparison Between Basalt And Granite

ParameterBasaltGranite
AppearanceBasalt appears to be of black color. Granite appears to be of grey color. 
Type of Igneous RockBasalt is Extrusive Igneous Rock. Granite is Intrusive Igneous Rock.
Found atBasalt is found on the Earth’s surface.Granite is found under the Earth’s surface.
TextureBasalt has a fine grain texture. Granite has a coarse grain texture. 
Also known asBasalt is known as the most abundant rock.Granite is known as the best igneous rock.

Major Differences Between Basalt and Granite

In order to better understand the difference between Basalt and Granite, let’s first understand what an Igneous Rock is and what its types are. 

What exactly is an Igneous Rock?

There are three different types of rocks present on the Earth. And these are Igneous Rocks, Metamorphic Rocks, and Sedimentary Rocks. Basalt and Granite are a type of Igneous Rock. Igneous Rocks are those rocks that are formed after the lava settles. When the lava cools down and becomes solid, Igneous rocks are formed. 

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Types of Igneous Rocks –

There are two types of Igneous Rocks, i.e., Intrusive Rocks and Extrusive Rocks.

  • Intrusive Igneous Rocks – Intrusive Igneous Rocks are those rocks that are found under the Earth’s surface. These rocks are formed by cool magma. Intrusive Rocks take a longer time to cool down than Extrusive Rocks. Granite is an example of Intrusive Rock. 
  • Extrusive Igneous Rocks – Extrusive Igneous Rocks are those rocks that are found on the Earth’s surface after the lava cools down. Extrusive Rocks take lesser time to cool down than Intrusive Rocks. Basalt is an example of Extrusive rock. 
  • Magma- Magma is the solid form of rock that is found under the Earth’s crust, whereas Lava is the liquid form of rock that is found on Earth’s surface after a volcano has erupted. 

What exactly is Basalt?

Basalt is a type of Igneous Extrusive Rock. It has a dark color and is made up of plagioclase and pyroxene. It is rich in Iron and Magnesium.

It is a fine-grained rock that is the most abundant rock on Earth. It is found on the ocean floor after lava cools down. It is also found on the moon. 

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Features

  1. Dark Black Color.
  2. Made up of plagioclase and pyroxene. 
  3. Rich in Iron and Magnesium. 
  4. Found on Earth’s surface. 

What exactly is Granite?

Granite is a type of Igneous Intrusive Rock. It has grey in color with a pink and red tint. It is made up of quartz and feldspar. It is a coarse-grained rock that is known as the best Igneous Rock. It is found under the Earth’s surface. 

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Features

  1. Grey in color. 
  2. Made up of Quartz and Feldspar. 
  3. Found under the Earth’s surface.

Contrast Between Basalt And Graphite

Origin of The Word

  • Basalt – The word Basalt originated from the Latin word “Basanites,” meaning “very hard stone,” which originated from the Late Latin word “Basaltes.” 
  • Granite – The word Granite originated from the Italian word “granite,” meaning “grained,” which originated from another Italian word, “grano,” meaning “grain,” which originated from the Latin word “granum.” 

Appearance

  • Basalt – Basalt has an appearance of a dark blackish color. 
  • Granite – Granite has an appearance of a grey color with a pink and red tint. 

Type of Igneous Rock

  • Basalt – Basalt is a type of Extrusive Igneous Rock. 
  • Granite – Granite is a type of Intrusive Igneous Rock. 

Composed Of

  • Basalt – Basalt is composed of plagioclase and pyroxene. 
  • Granite – Granite is composed of quartz and feldspar. 

Texture

  • Basalt – Basalt has a fine–grained texture. 
  • Granite – Granite has a coarse–grained texture. 

Found At

  • Basalt – Basalt is found on the surface of the Earth. 
  • Granite – Granite is found under the Earth’s surface. 

Uses

  • Basalt – Basalt is used in constructing buildings, statues, monuments, home décor, etc. 
  • Granite – Granite is used in construction work, monuments, kitchen slabs, countertops, etc. 

Also Known As

  • Basalt – Basalt is also known as the Earth’s most abundant rock. 
  • Granite – Granite is also known as the Best Igneous Rock. 

Conclusion

Igneous rocks are rocks that are formed by magma and lava. Basalt and Granite are two types of Igneous rocks with similarities and differences. Basalt is usually blackish in color, whereas Granite is generally greyish in color with a pink and red tint.

Basalt is an extrusive igneous rock which means Basalt is formed on the Earth’s surface after lava cools down after a volcano has erupted.

Granite, on the other hand, is an intrusive igneous rock which means it is present under the Earth’s surface and is formed by cool magma. 


FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q1. How does Granite have a Pink – ish or Red – ish tint?

The Granite has a pinkish or reddish tint because of the presence of Orthoclase Feldspar. Orthoclase is a mineral from the Feldspar group. This mineral is present in the formation of Igneous Rock.

Orthoclase Feldspar is used in the work of glass and ceramics. Orthoclase Feldspar is also used in the work of paints and plastics.  

Q2. What is the major difference between Granite and Basalt?

The major difference between Granite and Basalt is that the former is an intrusive igneous rock, and the latter is an extrusive igneous rock.

Granite is formed on the Earth’s surface, whereas Basalt is formed under the Earth’s surface. 

Q3. Which rock is rich in Magnesium?

Basalt is very rich in Magnesium. 

Q4. What is the difference between Intrusive and Extrusive Igneous Rocks?

The Igneous Intrusive Rocks are formed on the Earth’s surface after the lava cools down. 

Igneous Extrusive Rocks are formed under the Earth’s surface from the magma. 


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