Building Science

Insulation is critical to the energy efficiency of a building envelope. While civilizations as early as the Ancient Greeks reportedly utilized asbestos, it was not until the 20th century that major advancements were made in insulative materials. Here's a look at some.

When Colorado architects from the Davis Partnership were designing a new building for the non-profit Shiloh House, they were thrilled to find a polyiso wall insulation solution from Rmax that gave them flexibility to use a variety of external claddings for visual interest without compromising.

Johns Manville, a Berkshire Hathaway company and leading building products manufacturer, announced today the release of 800 Series Spin-Glas® Ultra, a fiberglass insulation board with a new polypropylene coated (poly-top) facing.

The following article by Tamlyn focuses on the reasons why it’s new weather-tight houserap boot with self-sealing rubber grommet may be the perfect solution to proper flashing around extruded piping.

Soprema has launched a new line of products to address “cool roof” designs to increase the energy efficiency of a building’s roof.  Released under the brand ALSAN, these products will also be marketed to extend the life of other roof building products.

The most common mistakes – the places where installers need to always pay attention – are reverse flashing, improper cuts, poor surface prep, and not properly seating the flashing on the substrate.

Since its inception in 1895, the Big Ten Conference has pioneered standards of excellence for intercollegiate sports. It should be no surprise then that the design of its headquarters building in Rosemont, Illinois features the construction industry’s highest performing products. In the Midwest, where temperatures can swing 100 degrees between winter and summer, the effectiveness of a building’s envelope, in particular, is a major factor on interior comfort, energy efficiency, and building durability.

Slab-on-grade insulation. It seems like it should not be so complicated. Yet, slab-on-grade insulation can be arranged in a number of configurations, each with pros and cons. One arrangement may be more conducive to maintaining a continuous thermal barrier from a wall down through its foundation but it allows unsightly exposure along the building perimeter. Another configuration may better conceal the insulation yet it allows an undesirable thermal short along the edge of the slab. A particular solution may provide great continuity of the thermal barrier but be problematic in terms of constructability.

A Maine-based startup hoping to expand the wood fiber insulation market in the U.S. is in the process of buying a shuttered paper mill and hopes to start production of batt, board and blown in insulation next year.

According to a recent survey of construction professionals by the Associated General Contractors of America and Autodesk, 80 percent indicated they are struggling to fill hourly positions. In addition, 81 percent of construction firms said it is only going to become more difficult.