Kingspan Insulated Panels have recently launched IPN-QuadCore, a new insulated panel core that they say delivers the best thermal, fire and environmental performance of any closed-cell material to date. Invented with a ‘bespoke’ technology process that creates a unique microcell structure, their new product could bring about a fundamental improvement in building performance, resulting in lower lifetime costs and enhanced environmental credentials.
This is what Gilbert McCarthy, Managing Director of Kingspan Insulated Panels had to say about the IPN-Quadcore at the launch. “This is our most significant insulated panel technology breakthrough in a decade,” “The property market demands high performance, energy-efficient buildings that deliver low risk, high net yield and reduced environmental impact. The unprecedented performance of IPN-QuadCore helps to deliver these superior buildings, making the strongest business case yet for sustainability.” Certainly, according to the available data, IPN-QuadCore will deliver a 20% thermal improvement over standard polyurethane insulated panel core insulation because it has a lambda value of just 0.018w/mK, the best yet in the industry, and achieves U-values as low as 0.08w/m2K.
A study by energy consultants AECOM found that, when used in a standard 5,000m2 distribution warehouse in the UK, a building envelope insulated with Kingspan IPN-QuadCore will reduce annual energy demand by almost 14% compared with the notional Part L2A 2013 specification. The same study found that a Kingspan IPN-QuadCore building envelope solution could even reduce the initial capital cost of constructing the warehouse because it reduces the required HVAC system size.
This is the first closed cell insulated panel core to be certified to FM 4882 for use in smoke sensitive occupancies. It achieves a reaction to fire of B-s1,d0 to EN 13501-1, the lowest smoke emissions possible, and offers fire resistance of up to one hour insulation and three hours integrity to EN 13501-2. The insulation core is also currently undergoing testing to be certified to LPS 1181 Part 2 for internal applications. This improved performance means that IPN-QuadCore products can be offered in a wider range of panel widths, up to 7m in some LPS 1208 specifications and up to 12m in certain specifications according to EN 13501-2.
Significantly, IPN-QuadCore also enhances the environmental credentials of buildings in two ways. Firstly, the technology helps to achieve higher ratings in building assessment methodologies such as BREEAM and LEED, with the aforementioned AECOM study showing that an IPN-QuadCore building achieves six more BREEAM Ene01 credits than a typical retail or distribution warehouse. Furthermore, the new technology behind the microcell structure creates a more resource-efficient material, improving the environmental impact of its production.
Each panel is also backed by the industry’s first 40 year guarantee which covers both structural and thermal performance. This ensures that a building will perform ‘as-built’ over the life of the property, reducing costly envelope maintenance and repair costs as time passes. Kingspan tell us that he long guarantee can be offered because IPN-QuadCore’s unique closed-cell structure resists moisture ingress thus maintaining the structural integrity of the core, and cuts the risk of additional moisture weight, a leading cause of structural failure in inferior products.
IPN-QuadCore is being introduced to cold-store insulated panels now, with a wider rollout commencing later in 2015.