Who would have thought that since Otto Bayer’s scientific discovery of polyurethane technology in 1937 our lives would have become surrounded with this material? Urethanes are always around us – an office chair, a motorcar’s interior and exterior parts, the lounge suite, shoe soles, industrial linings, paints right through to packaging, are all urethane-based.
One of this technology’s critical applications is insulation and as an insulation material the applications become limitless. It is foam injected for fridges, cold chain or building panels and hot water boilers. Spray foam can be applied internally or externally to retrofit roofs where Lambdaboard can be used to create an envelope on insulation for a new building, reducing energy costs. Polyurethane and polyisocyanurate have the lowest thermal conductivity of all the insulation applications and not only is it an insulant, but it is also part of the structural design on appliances and composite structures.
No harmful CFC’s
There is also a heightened awareness on environmentally-friendly products after Durban hosted the COP17 climate talks. Rigifoam has been promoting eco-friendly materials since 2003, making it the first company to remove all CFC or HCFC’s from its product range. HFC’s were introduced into Rigifoam’s systems and then removed in 2008 as it was not compliant with the Kyoto Protocol’s required standards. Lambdaboard was introduced to the market around the same time with major success from day one as it has excellent thermal performance, helping to reduce electricity consumption and creating comfort zones for building occupants. Lambdaboard does not contain any ozone-depleting substances (ODS) and complies with the Kyoto Protocol. Ecomate was introduced into chemical systems and Ecospray foam was launched in 2010, which remains the only eco-friendly systems in Africa hence Rigifoam/Resichem being the UNDP’s technical advisor for HCFC phase out in Africa.
Polyisocyanurate in Lambdaboard offers the highest R values per inch commercially available in accordance to the SANS 204 on energy-efficiency in buildings. It allows for thinner insulation, which makes designing easier for architects. This also makes installation easier for contractors, who do not have to take compressing factors into account. In addition, the thinner insulation has no effect on the overall thermal performance.
Spray foam is a seamless application with zero heat bridges improving insulation properties and reducing air flow into insulated areas, which create uncontrolled temperature variations. The closed-cell foam’s thermal performance does not get affected by air movement or moisture and dust does not affect its performance either as experienced with radiant barriers.
Polyisocyanurate (PIR) foams are closed-cell thermoset materials – they do not melt or drip during a fire. It only chares and does not spread the flames. The myth of toxicity is also unfounded as tests show Lambdaboard to have a toxicity of 4,56, which allows for it to be used in confined areas. Insurance companies are insisting more on rigid polyurethane (PUR/PIR) building panels as it is structurally more stable and less of a fire risk. Factory Mutual, the world’s largest underwriters, recommends PIR foams with supporting test certificates to be used as the rigid insulation material.
Lambdaboard and Ecospray – a definite number one choice in thermal insulations. Contact Rigifoam or Resichem for optimum insulation.