Natural sandstone has been used as a masonry unit since ages. Sand and lime, from which it was created by nature, have been applied in mortars as from the earliest times of ancient history.
Inspired by the natural processes of the earth's crust, in the 19th century the first attempts in fabricating units (bricks) from sand and lime were made. In 1880 the German researcher Wilhelm Michaëlis finally succeeded in producing "artificial sandstone" by the action of steam under pressure. The production of calcium silicate units on an industrial level became feasible after the introduction of the first rotating presses, which were designed in England. The first of these presses was installed in Germany in 1894, an event that marked the birth of the German calcium silicate industry.
Right from the beginning the production process and the technical properties of calcium silicate units developed rapidly and soon the first industrial standard for calcium silicate units was introduced. It was the German DIN 106 in 1927.
Today calcium silicate is one of the major masonry building materials in Europe.