Natural insulation acts as both a heat shield and a heat buffer

release the absorbed heat quicker than mate- rials with high thermal mass, such as concrete, reducing the risk of heat build-up. In effect, natural insulation acts as both a heat shield and a heat buffer.

Moisture balance

Natural fibre insulation products are known for their superior sound insulation properties compared to man-made materials

Natural fibres absorb water vapour by binding water within the chemical make-up of the fibre itself. This occurs through weak chemical bonds so the water actually becomes part of the natural fibre rather than condensing on the fibre surface as liquid water. Because the bonds between water and fibre are weak, the water can be easily released as humidity drops. This process enables natural fibres to hold nearly 30 per cent of their weight in water and still be completely dry to the touch, thus reducing risks associated with damp.

Natural fibres absorb and release moisture in response to relative humidity of the surrounding environment. As humidity

Kingspan TEK for new Hospital

The Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel and Kingspan TEK Building System of Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) have been used as part of an innovative £40 million mental health facility in the heart of Leigh, in Wigan, Greater Manchester. In the first phase of the project 6350m2

of the Kingspan TEK Building System

was installed as part of a hybrid structural frame. The Kingspan TEK Building System panels form the structure of the single storey areas whilst a steel frame overclad system was fitted in the two-storey areas, with the Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel being used as infills.

01544 387 384 Architects Datafile website

The Architects Datafile (ADF) website is an online provider of past and present products and news items for the architect or specifier. is a one-stop source for all the latest press releases providing any visitor with access to information about products and services that they may require. From the website, you can find links to digital

issues that have live links to advertisers’ sites, as well as daily email alerts to keep you as informed as possible.

increases, natural fibres absorb more mois- ture, ‘binding’ the moisture in a safe dry form. As humidity levels drop, the reverse process occurs and natural fibres release the absorbed moisture, thus balancing the levels of humidity.

Indoor pollutants

As well as its ability to control moisture and heat levels, natural fibres such as wool can remove certain indoor air pollutants, such as formaldehyde, that are used in binders and glues in many products. This way NFIs contribute towards a healthier indoor envi- ronment. Wool acts as a filtration material in a two-stage reaction that removes formalde- hyde from the air and releases water. Using NFIs in the UK brings further sustainability benefits, not least that we have a good supply of local, rapidly renewable natural fibres. In addition, natural fibres typically contain 50 per cent non-fossil carbon, so using these materials in durable long-life end-uses such as insulation is an ideal way to store carbon while utilising a valuable local resource.

Mark Lynn is managing director of Eden Renewable Innovations Ltd

Kingspan helps ambitious expansion Over 1,300m2

of Kingspan Kooltherm FM

Duct Insulation has been installed as part of the iconic new extension to Tate Modern in London. The 64.5m tall tower, named the Switch House, adjoins Tate Modern’s existing home within the former Bankside Power Station to provide over 5000m2

of new exhibition space spread over ten levels. Kingspan Kooltherm FM Duct Insulation was installed on the project in a 40mm thickness. The insulation has been developed to provide premium performance and comprises a fibre-free rigid thermoset phenolic insulation core.

01544 388 601 Fans detained in police station...!

Polypipe Ventilation, manufacturer of energy-saving domestic ventilation systems, has had its Silavent Sapphire dMEV centrifugal fans specified and installed into a highly unusual new residential

conversion – a former police station in Harrogate. As part of the conversion, energy efficient heating and ventilation has been installed throughout. This includes Silavent Sapphire dMEV centrifugal fans to provide continuous ventilation to bathrooms. The UK manufac- tured Silavent Sapphire centrifugal dMEV fans boast excellent performance and contemporary design, at an affordable price.



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