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Black Paper Polyiso:



Black Paper Polyisocyanurate
1" Polyisocyanurate Foam Board from Plywood King


Polyiso as Insulation

In independent testing, polyiso's thermal performance has proven to exceed other common roof insulating materials. The test revealed that less polyiso is needed to maintain the same R-Value. Polyiso has the highest R-Value per inch of thickness of any building material on the market. An R-Value indicates the insulation's resistance to heat flow. The more heat flow resistance your insulation provides, the lower your heating and cooling cost become. While typically used in commercial roofing, polyiso can be used as wall insulation with R-values kin to closed cell spray foam.

Features

Not affected when exposed to petroleum based solvents in adhesives, paints, stains, water repellent and preservative coatings, and in bituminous waterproofing.
Superior performance in fire tests - Polyiso meets the strict standard of both FM Class 1 Approvals (FM 4450/4470), UL 1256, and CAN/ULC S126M
A CFC- and HCFC-free product with zero ozone depletion potential
Virtually all Polyiso insulation is manufactured using recycled material.
6.5 R value per Inch


Additional Uses

The fire-retardant properties of polyisocyanurate stopped a factory fire in Spain. The factory was destroyed, but was stopped at the doors of a Polyisocyanurate (PIR) blast unit, which was attached to the loading dock.


Polyisocyanurate has been used in layers as a shielding material for ballistic protection and/or blast damage suppression.

Polyisocyanurate insulation was originally designed for NASA and used for extreme conditions. In 1995, polyisocyanurate was used to cover sections of their shuttle's External Tank (ET). The foam material (rigid polyurethane foams and polyisocyanurate foams, or spray-on foam insulation (SOFI)), with updates for compliance with environmental regulations, remains the standard thermal insulation system today for vehicles including Shuttle, Delta IV, and many others.




Resistance of EPS

Helpful Resources:

Polyisocyanurate Insulation Manufacturers Association (PIMA)
Polyiso Insulation: The Industry's Choice for Energy Conservation.
Material Safety and Data Sheet.






Foil-Faced Polyiso:



Black Paper Polyisocyanurate
3" Foil-Faced Polyisocyanurate Foam Board from Plywood King

Polyiso as Insulation

Polyisocyanurate is the most thermally efficient rigid board insulation available in the marketplace, it has the highest R-value per inch of thickness. While typically used in commercial roofing, polyiso can be used as wall insulation with R-values kin to closed cell spray foam. Foil faced Polyiso insulation is suitable for use in masonry and rain screen cavity walls. Both commercial and residential buildings typically require a "cavity wall" of air space and insulation between the brick veneer or rain screen and the interior to provide protection from weather and fire. Since the required thickness of insulation affects the cost of construction, an increasing number of builders and architects are choosing Polyiso cavity wall insulation due to its superior R-value to thickness ratio

Features

The low permeability of foil-faced Polyiso coupled with its high thermal performance decreases the likelihood of condensation in walls.
Superior performance in fire tests - Polyiso meets the strict standard of both FM Class 1 Approvals (FM 4450/4470), UL 1256, and CAN/ULC S126M
Virtually all Polyiso insulation is manufactured using recycled material.
6.5 R-value Per inch, when installed properly, the R-value of the system can be bumped by R-3

Additional Uses

Polyisocyanurate with foil backing can be used to insulate saunas. The foil is an excellent barrier to trap the radiant heat from the sauna .

The high R value, and radiant barrier also makess it a valuable material for constructing and insulating solar collectors, walk in coolers, pipes, ductwork, or any other scenario where radiant heat needs to be contained.



Resistance of EPS

Helpful Resources:







isoGuard:

Black Paper Polyisocyanurate
isoGuard Foam Board from Plywood King

isoGuard as Insulation

isoGuard has the highest thermal performance of any 1/2-inch insulation cover board on the market with an R-value of 2.5 and meets FM Global 1-90 standards. With a compressive strength of more than 800 kPa, isoGuard cover board adds structural strength and helps to absorb the effects of hail, worker traffic and other potentially damaging impacts. It is a high-density, closed cell, Polyiso foam core that has been manufactured with a coated fiberglass facer which is mold and moisture resistant, eliminating the threat of fungi or bacteria. While typically used in commercial roofing, polyiso can be used as wall insulation with R-values kin to closed cell spray foam.

Features

Extremely lightweight.
2.5 R-Value per half inch of thickness.
At only 12 lbs. per 4'x8' sheet, this product can offer savings from reduced transportation costs, labor and material during application.
Virtually all Polyiso insulation is manufactured using recycled material.

Additional Uses

isoGuard can be placed under photovoltaic (PV) solar-energy systems on rooftops to prevent overburden issues.

Can be taped, mudded, and painted as an easier alternative to drywall.



Resistance of EPS







Extruded Polystyrene:

Black Paper Polyisocyanurate
2" Extruded Polystyrene Foam Board from Plywood King

XPS as Insulation

Extruded Polystyrene(XPS) foam board is an insulation material similar to polyisocyanurate in its texture and rigidity. It is usually blue or pink in color, with a smooth plastic surface. Like fiberglass, the pink and blue colors are not natural but part of the manufacturing company's marketing efforts. Polystyrene is liquified to create XPS. This liquid is mixed into a foam then shaped in a flat mold. Once hardened, it is cut into the 4'x 8' sheet boards. XPS panels can come unfaced or faced typically with a foil air/vapor barrier. The R-value is about 5 per in. This type of rigid foam won't readily absorb water and can act as an semi-impermeable vapor barrier. XPS is stronger and more durable than expanded polystyrene (aka Styrofoam) and it is comparably priced to polyiso. Polystyrene is very chemically inert, being resistant to acids and bases but is easily dissolved by many chlorinated solvents, and many aromatic hydrocarbon solvents. Because of its resilience and inertness, it is used to fabricate many objects of commerce. It is attacked by many organic solvents, which dissolve the polymer. Foamed polystyrene is used for packaging chemicals. Like all organic compounds, polystyrene burns to give carbon dioxide and water vapor.

Features

Excellent long-term stable insulating performance at R-5 per inch
Exceptional moisture resistance, long-term durability
maintains 90% of R-value and covers all ASTM C578 properties
Because XPS foam is essentially a plastic material, it will not corrode or rot or support the growth of mold or mildew. It is resistant to microorganisms found in soil and provides no nutrient value to vermin. These properties make it an outstanding insulating material for below grade applications.
Lightweight, durable rigid foam panels are easy to handle and install
Versatile applications: sheathing, foundation walls, masonry, cavity walls
Use of XPS foam is not recommended where sustained temperatures exceed 165º F. Do not use in direct contact with chimneys, heater vents, steam pipes or other such surfaces. Intermittent heat exposure during installation and use should not exceed 180º F.

Additional Uses

XPS has been used as a floating platform for hydroponic gardening.
XPS can be cast into moulds with very fine detail. It has been used for economical, rigid plastic items, such as plastic model assembly kits, plastic cutlery, and CD cases.
In 1941, Dow scientist Ray McIntyre invented extruded polystyrene foam (Styrofoam), a light, waterproof material. The first application was by the U.S. Coast Guard as an "unsinkable" buoyancy billet in their six-man life rafts.
XPS can be used as Geofoam and applied as insulation beneath highways or airport runways.
Other applications include pipe insulation, marine use, floral and arts and crafts, utility lines, and agricultural uses.


Resistance of EPS

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Expanded PolyStyrene:



Black Paper Polyisocyanurate
2" Expanded Polystyrene Foam Board from Plywood King

EPS as Insulation

With an R-value of 4.17 per inch, expanded polystyrene has been used as rigid foam board insulation for 50 years. As of 2013, the International Code Council explicitly permits EPS throughout frost protected shallow foundations,under slabs and any other below grade application. One of the more versatile insulating options, EPS is used in Roof, Wall, Floor, Below Grade & Structural GeoFoam applications. EPS foam is the insulation used most widely in insulated concrete forms and structural insulated panels. EPS provides the highest R-value per dollar out of any foam insulating board, it costs the least, while meeting or exceeding all required building and energy codes. EPS is approved for ground contact, below grade applications and can be treated to resist insects, and it does not retain water over the long term.

Features

After testing 20kg/m3 EPS foam board,it was discovered that low temperatures,water absorption level,and exposure to freeze/thaw cycles have no negative influence on the mechanical behavior of the EPS(Duskov,1997).

Expanded polystyrene effectively reduces the transmission of airborne sound through partitioned walls, ceilings and floors, effectively replacing thicker, heavier materials (Huntsman, 1999).

In 1995,the Expanded Polystyrene Association of Canada (EPAC) initiated a joint research program with the National Research Council of Canada to evaluate the performance of EPS insulation in an exterior insulation basement system application. The moisture content of EPS after a 30 month exposure was in the range of 0.01% to 0.96% by volume.

Additional Uses

EPS packaging retains the nutritional value of fruit and vegetables better than any other packaging,according to research conducted by the Korean Food Research Institute and confirmed by the Michigan State University School of Packaging.
In Okinawa Japan, U.S. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Five completed what is called an "alternative building structure" made entirely out of Expanded Polystyrene Foam and a thin layer of a specialty concrete mixture that was troweled on both outside and inside the dwelling. The structure rated as being able to with stand hurricane wind sand earthquakes.
In the automotive industry,the use of EPS is widespread as a lightweight void fill under the floors.


Resistance of EPS

Helpful Resources:







Radiant Barriers as Insulation:


A radiant barrier is a reflective/low-emittance surface, on or near a building component, that intercepts the flow of radiant energy to and from the building component. Reflective insulation uses layers of aluminum, paper, and/or plastic to trap air and thus reduce convective heat transfer. Reflective insulation is a similar insulating and energy conserving product that adds an air cushion, usually in the form of plastic bubble material, between layers of aluminum foil to improve the insulating value or R-value of what would otherwise be a simple radiant barrier. Aluminium is very effective in reducing radiant heat transfer. In fact, the metalized and foil materials commonly used in reflective insulation will reduce radiant heat transfer by as much as 97%. Installing a radiant barrier between the heat source (sun) and an existing R-Value rated insulation will improve the effectiveness of the R-value of the rated insulation. This is because only 3% of the heat ins now hitting the R-value rated insulation and therefore, it will take longer for it to absorb 100% of its potential.

Features

  • RBI does not promote mold or fungus growth which contributes to safety and peace of mind.

  • Minimizes ozone depletion due to less load placed upon HVAC system.

  • The bubble-trapped air means that no air movement by convection should occur within the reflective insulation. Such air currents would reduce or even eliminate the R-value of insulation just as air currents in walls, floors, or ceilings will increase heat transfer through those structures.
  • Reflective insulation does not irritate the skin, eyes, or throat and contains no substances which will outgas

  • The change in thermal performance due to compaction or moisture absorption, a common concern with mass insulation, is not an issue with reflective insulation.


Additional Uses

Radiant barrier technology was used during the Apollo program to shield spacecraft and instruments from the harsh conditions in space. Since then, nearly every NASA mission has employed the shiny material to protect astronauts and equipment. In 1996, the Space Foundation inducted the technology into its Space Technology Hall of Fame.
Reflective insulation has been used for everything from lightweight emergency blankets to insulation for homes and buildings.
Can be used as a sound barrier to reflect and deaden sound from the outside.




Helpful Resources:







What is an R-Value?


R-value is a measure of apparent thermal conductivity, and thus describes the rate that heat energy is transferred through a material or assembly, regardless of its original source. The SI unit for R-value is kelvin square meters per watt.

What is a LTTR and how is it Different from an R-Value?

In short, the LTTR provides a technically supported, more descriptive measure of the long-term thermal resistance of polyiso insulation—15-year time-weighted average.

In 2003 the polyiso industry introduced the concept of long-term thermal resistance, or LTTR. LTTR is a 15-year, time-weighted average of the foam's R-value. It represents the actual R-value that the polyiso insulation will provide while in servic and enables building owners and designers to predict exactly how much insulating value will be provided and how much energy will be saved over the life of the roof. LTTR represents the most advanced scientific method to describe the Long-Term Thermal Resistance of foam insulation products using blowing agents other than air, including polyiso, polyurethane and extruded polystyrene. This method is based on accelerated aging by conditioning thin slices of foam insulation at a particular temperature for a specified number of days. The method is based on consensus standards in both the United States and Canada and provides a 15-year time-weighted average LTTR. Using techniques in ASTM C13031, CAN/ULC S7702 predicts an R-value that has been shown to be equivalent to the average performance of a permeably faced foam insulation product over 15 years. In Canada, this is used as the design R-value.

What is the Difference Between Closed Cell and Open Cell Insulation?


Generally speaking, closed cell foams consist of trapped gas bubbles formed during the foam's expansion and cure. These gas bubbles consist of the blowing agent and are permanently locked into place during the curing of the foam. Open cell foams; however, are quite different in nature. The blowing agent gas is not trapped by the forming cells and instead is released to the atmosphere during foam expansion and curing. The foam cells have "holes" in their walls, enabling them to interlock and interconnect. The spaces within the cells are filled with atmospheric air, much like a sponge.

How does the Insulating Value of Polyisocyanurate Compare to Fiberglass?


Short Answer:

The standard R-value test designed by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) does not account for moisture or air movement which can dramatically lower the R-Value of fiberous and open-cell insulating materials. Testing these materials in non real-world conditions leads to a favorable bias towards fiberous insulations (fiberglass, rock wool and cellulose fiber). Very little input went into the test for solid insulations, such as polyisocyanurate, extruded polystyrene, expanded polystyrene or urethane foam which tend to have higher and more stable R-values in real-world conditions.

Longer Answer:

The three most common methods for measuring R- Value are ASTM C 177, ASTM C 518, and ASTM C 976, the publications list their sources of error and variance as follows:

ASTM C 117 , 5.7: The thermal transmission properties of a specimen of material have the potential to be affected due to the following factors: (a) composition of the material (b) moisture or other environmental conditions (c) time or temperature exposure (d) thickness (e) temperature difference across the specimen (f) mean temperature.
ASTM C 518 , 4.3: The thermal transmission properties of specimens of a given material or product may vary due to variability of the composition of the material; be affected by moisture or other conditions; change with time; change with mean temperature and temperature difference; and depend upon the prior thermal history.
ASTM C 976 , Note 6: Discrepancies are especially likely for nonuniform specimens with high conductance surface elements connected to thermal bridges when measured resistances, R, are obtained under still air conditions and the standardized surface resistances are typical of high wind velocities. The user is cautioned to be aware of such possible discrepancies.

Measuring R-Value without taking into account the conditions of water vapor (moisture levels) and airflow leads to a more favorable result for insulating materials that are permeable to air and water. Moisture can mat down fiberglass batt and blown insulation, decreasing its performance as an insulator and reducing it's effective R-Value. The Data Sheet for fiberglass insulation even states that "Commercial roof/ceiling thermal applications require that the building envelope block the movement of air from the outdoor environment to the conditioned space" and failure to do so could lead to "loss of thermal control, discomfort of the building occupants and frozen pipes". These conditions make it difficult to compare R-values between the industry standard of fiberglass to insulation such as closed cell polyisocyanurate rigid foam board. Effectiveness of these different breeds of insulation has too many external variables to be reduced to a comparable number.

Radiant energy has also been ignored in the standard test for R-Value. Adding a foil face radiant barrier to your insulation can increase the real-world R-Value by around 3-R depending on the thickness and type of insulation material.

How does a Radiant Barrier Work?


Radiation is the movement of heat rays across air spaces from a warm object to a cooler object such as the heat we feel from a wood stove. Insulation in an attic will give off heat radiant heat to the cold attic space in winter and to the living space in the summer. Regular insulation will not stop radiant heat loss, instead it must be reflected with a radiant barrier.

What is the "R" Value of a Radiant Barrier?


Radiant barriers do not technically have R-Values, this is because they do not "absorb" heat like R-Value rated products. A simple comparison is to imagine standing in the shade of a tree on a hot sunny day. The shade has no R-Value, but it cools you down the heat by blocking the transfer of radiant heat flow from the sun. While the barrier itself has no R-value, it is possible to calculate an R-value for a specific reflective insulation installation. Using a foil-faced polyisocyanurate board typically increases the effectiveness of an insulation system installed properly with a 3/4" dead airspace by about an R3.

How Much R-Value do I Need?