Client News - Smith Goodfellow

Kingspan TEK: Showing the potential of Passivhaus


Photo credit: Potton

The Kingspan TEK Building System of Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) has been used to create a contemporary show home that blends ambitious architectural design with the meticulous energy efficiency requirements of the Passivhaus Standard, at the Potton Show Centre in St Neots.

HTA Design’s blueprint for the new Elsworth Show Home centres around a small enclosed courtyard with a large rooflight to maximise incoming natural light. This is surrounded by the staircase and living areas, whose size and purpose can be adapted to suit different lifestyles. Architect and Head of Sustainable Future at HTA Design, Rory Bergin, discussed the project:

“Achieving the requirements of the Passivhaus Standard can be a challenge. It often leads to the architectural design of the building to be compromised in order to offer the most energy-efficient form, typically resulting in a design that sacrifices interest for simplicity. Potton and HTA Design wanted to demonstrate that this is not necessary when a high-performance construction system is used. We purposely selected the design which would be the most complex to build from an energy efficiency perspective as it offered the most flexible family home. The result is a testament to the high levels of building performance and architectural design that can be achieved with careful planning, expert workmanship, and the right products.”

The build features Kingspan TEK Building System panels in both 142 mm and 172 mm widths. 142 mm Kingspan TEK Building System panels were used to form the walls, with an additional external layer of 100 mm Kingspan Kooltherm K12 Framing Board to ensure a ‘thermal-bridge free construction’ and to achieve a U-value of just 0.10 W/m2∙K. The roof was constructed with 172 mm Kingspan TEK Building System panels as the increased thickness allows the panel to span further without additional support. Not only did the thicker panels help to preserve the open modern aesthetic of the show home, installing them in a large format also simplified the build and reduced the time spent working at height.

In addition to its high thermal performance and construction benefits, the Kingspan TEK Building System was also specified to help the building achieve low air leakage rates. Dr. Paul Newman, Director of Self-Build at Potton, explains:

“We have used the Kingspan TEK Building System on hundreds of low-energy buildings and trust and understand its performance characteristics. From experience, we knew that by carefully sealing and taping the external wall junctions that we could achieve the airtightness required for a Passivhaus level construction. After carrying out two tests, including a smoke test to reveal leaks, we attained a final result of 0.43 ach (air changes per hour) @ 50 pa, exceeding the standard’s minimum of 0.60 ach @ 50 Pa.”

Kingspan TEK Building System panels comprise an OSB/3 facing either side of a highly insulated core and can deliver U-values of 0.20 W/m2.K or better. All Kingspan TEK panels manufactured at the Sherburn–in–Elmet manufacturing facility are certified to BES 6001 ‘Very Good’ and the manufacturing facility also carries both FSC® (FSC®-C109304) and PEFC Chain of Custody certification.

The Elsworth Show Home is now open to visitors and is seeking to become fully certified by the Passivhaus Institute in the near future.

Kingspan adds premium touch to luxury develpment

Kingspan Kooltherm

A stylish development in the heart of London is the latest project to benefit from the excellent thermal efficiency of products from the Kingspan Kooltherm range.

Fitzroy Place has been constructed on the 3-acre site of the old Middlesex Hospital. The original site was completely flattened aside from the chapel and sections of the original Victorian façade. This gave developers, Exemplar and Aviva Investors, a blank canvas on which to create the new mixed-use estate. Sheppard Robson and Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands prepared the ambitious design which includes 235 private apartments, 54 affordable homes, two office buildings, restaurant and retail spaces.

The estate, constructed by Sir Robert McAlpine, has been designed with a focus on detail and quality which extends to the energy performance of the development. The domestic elements of the site achieve an enhanced level of energy efficiency when compared with the Building Regulations, whilst the office blocks hold a BREEAM rating of ‘Excellent’. To meet these requirements, a fabric-first approach was adopted and several Kingspan Kooltherm products were specified across the site.

The façade of the new buildings combine brick, concrete and glass, drawing inspiration from the original red-brick hospital buildings and the ‘white working buildings’ of the area north of Oxford street. Kingspan Kooltherm K15 Rainscreen Board was used to insulated the rainscreen elements of the façade whilst Kingspan Kooltherm K12 Framing Board was installed between timber battens on masonry sections of the external walls.

With thermal conductivities as low as 0.020 W/m.K, the Kingspan Kooltherm products helped the project to achieve excellent levels of thermal performance. They also helped to contribute towards the award of credits within the BREEAM assessments for the office sections of the development. Kingspan Kooltherm K12 Framing Board and K15 Rainscreen Board, manufactured at Kingspan Insulation’s site in Pembridge, are both certified ‘Excellent’ under BES 6001 and hold a highest possible BRE Green Guide rating of A+.

The existing façades along Nassau Street and No. 10 Mortimer Street have been carefully restored and a new mansard roof has been constructed for the buildings which sit behind them. Kingspan Kooltherm K7 Pitched Roof Board was installed as part of the new roof constructions, allowing them to achieve a U-value 0.13 W/mK with a minimal construction depth.

EPIC releases new guidance on mechanical handling

Mechanical Handling

According to the latest government statistics, falls from height caused 37 fatalities during 2015-2016, with 37,000 cases of non-fatal injuries in the same period. Whilst it is best not working at height at all, if it is necessary, suitable equipment should be provided to keep workers safe and protect employers from avoidable litigation. EPIC has produced a new guidance paper to describe how to minimise the risk of an accident, when working with insulated panel systems.

EPIC’s ‘Safe Handling of Insulated Panels including use of Mechanical Handling Equipment’ looks at the planning, handling of insulated panels, and working at height. The document covers points that should be considered to reduce risks when preparing, as well as during CDM and installation stages. In particular, it focuses on the use of mechanical handling equipment for the installation of insulated panels.

The guide discusses adequate training in correct lifting techniques, procedures and practices, the use of apparatus such as forklifts or lifting beams with crane forks on the ground, in addition to safety nets and edge protection when working on a roof. EPIC also encourages the consideration of weather conditions and how this may affect the ability to work without incident.

The latest guide can now be downloaded for free from:

To keep up with the latest news, visit the website or follow EPIC’s company page on LinkedIn:

Kingspan Insulated Panels achieves BES 6001

BES 6001

Kingspan Insulated Panels’ continual commitment to responsible business practises has been recognised with the achievement of BES 6001: Responsible Sourcing of Construction Products certification.

Developed by BRE Global, the standard provides an exacting framework of issues manufacturers must address to ensure responsible sourcing of construction materials. This includes organisational governance and supply chain management, in addition to environmental and social elements.

All wall and roof panels manufactured at Kingspan Insulated Panel’s Holywell and Sherburn manufacturing facilities have been certified to BES 6001 ‘Very Good’, with particular success in the Greenhouse Gas and Resource Use categories of the scoring table. This provides clear assurance that the products are constructed from raw materials which meet the highest levels of responsible sourcing practice. Additionally, the BES 6001 certification means that the Kingspan Insulated Panel products can also contribute towards the award of credits within BREEAM assessments.

Phil Smith, Managing Director at Kingspan Insulated Panels, commented on the achievement:

“It is becoming increasingly important for businesses to be able to demonstrate responsible practise in all aspects of their work. We are immensely proud to see our products meet the BES 6001 standard and, using the feedback from the process, we are looking forward to further develop our approach.”

EcoTherm installed on Novo neighbourhood

Novo Countryside


A new collection of contemporary homes at Countryside’s Novo development in Cambridge are set to benefit from the installation of EcoTherm Eco-Torch insulation.

Countryside specialise in private housing developments and the Novo community consists of luxury 2-bed apartments and 4-bedroom houses situated around a landscaped square in the town of Great Kneighton. The site offers excellent access to local amenities and is within easy reach of London.

10,000 m2 of 100 mm thick Eco-Torch was supplied to insulate the flat roofs of the development. The product comprises a rigid polyisocyanurate (PIR) insulation core faced with coated glass tissue on one side and bituminised glass fibre tissue with polypropylene fleece on the other, achieving thermal conductivities as low as 0.024 W/m.K.

Eco-Torch is well suited to new-build applications or for upgrading the thermal performance of existing buildings as they are lightweight, easy to install, and can help to meet building regulation requirements. The flat roof board is suitable for use with any hot applied roofing system or adhered single ply system on metal, timber or concrete decks and withstands the application of hot bitumen and asphalt to the surface up to 230°C.

All EcoTherm insulation boards are manufactured under a management system which is approved to ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and BS OHSAS 18001. Their insulation core is produced with a blowing agent which is CFC/HCFC free and has zero Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) with a low Global Warming Potential (GWP).

Kingspan Kooltherm K100 range expands

Kooltherm K100 Range                                                       

Kingspan Insulation has announced the launch of two new products to join their innovative new Kooltherm K100 Range, designed to deliver lower U-values with a minimal construction thickness.

Kingspan Kooltherm K112 Framing Board and K107 Pitched Roof Board are the latest products in the range, which was launched last year. Their advanced, fibre-free insulation core has a thermal conductivity of just 0.018 W/m.K across all available board thicknesses, the lowest for any rigid phenolic insulation board. This revolutionary composition offers architects, specifiers and builders the freedom to design and construct buildings with inherently outstanding fabric performance, without having to compromise on internal space.

All the products in the Kooltherm K100 Range are manufactured with a blowing agent that has zero Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) and very low Global Warming Potential (GWP). The insulation boards are non-deleterious, easy to handle and install, and are unaffected by air infiltration.

Kooltherm, Therma and KoolDuct insulation products and cavity closers manufactured at Kingspan Insulation’s facilities in Pembridge and Selby are certified to BES 6001 (Framework Standard for the Responsible Sourcing of Construction Products) ‘Excellent’.

The Kingspan Kooltherm K100 Range is now available on the Kingspan Insulation U-value Calculator, and detailed product brochures are available for download on the website:


OPTIM-R installed at Aberdeen medical centre


GP practice staff in Aberdeen city are enjoying a new and improved environment at their purpose-built facility, with the help of the Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System.

Woodside Fountain Health Centre is a bespoke build replacing the Woodside Medical Group’s premises on Western Road. The triple primary care facility offers a collaboration of services within the fully accessible building. The new health centre is comprised of 12 consulting rooms, a minor procedures room, treatment rooms, an NHS dental practice, and a team of community nurses. The project was overseen by contractors Miller Construction, which was acquired by Galliford Try in 2014.

The centre features a spacious roof terrace. To insulate this, whilst also maintaining an even transition from the internal area, 30 mm thickness of the Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System was specified. Unlike conventional insulation, Kingspan OPTIM-R panels feature a microporous core which is evacuated, encased and sealed in a gas-tight envelope. This design allows the panels to achieve outstanding insulation performance with an aged thermal conductivity of 0.007 W/m.K, enabling the target U-value of 0.15 W/m2.K to be achieved with the slimmest possible construction.  A further layer of Kingspan Styrozone was installed above the System, followed by a waterproof membrane and the final balcony surface.

The Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System also includes OPTIM-R flex infill strips which can be cut to size, ensuring the System can meet all design requirements. When installed to Kingspan Insulation’s guidelines, the Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System can provide outstanding long term thermal performance over the lifetime of a building.

Kingspan OPTIM-R has a BDA Agrément® certification for thicknesses of 20-40 mm. BDA Agrément® is recognised by professional bodies such as the NHBC and LABC, which can fast-track approvals and offers an assurance that the products are safe and effective.

South Shields starts a new chapter

Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel Curve

South Shields is benefitting from a £16 million cultural centre featuring an iconic circular façade created with the Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel.

Contractors Bowmer & Kirkland have overseen the project, named ‘The Word, National Centre for the Written Word’. The three-storey structure designed by FaulknerBrowns Architects, includes library and exhibition space, IT suite, 3D printers, and café. The development, completed in October 2016, is part of a £100 million regeneration masterplan which partners South Tyneside Council with Muse Developments.

Creating a curved structure can pose a challenge, but the Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel was successfully engineered to provide a smooth, highly insulated exterior envelope. To achieve this, the structural insulated panels (SIPs) were designed and factory cut into narrow widths. This allowed them to be quickly and easily fixed to the concrete frame.

Steve McIntyre, Partner at FaulknerBrowns, explained their vision for the project: “The form and design approach of this iconic building seeks to establish a new benchmark in terms of quality of design, use of materials, and integration of public realm within the wider urban fabric of South Shields. This circular form encourages pedestrian movement between the Town Centre and the Riverside as well as having a striking and contemporary presence. The circular construction achieved with the Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel helped us to accomplish the concept of the spreading pages of a book.”

The 142 mm Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel installed on ‘The Word’ can help to achieve U-values of 0.20 W/m2.K or better its OSB/3 facing and unique jointing system helps to minimise unnecessary air loss. The manufacturing facility where the panels are produced carries both FSC® (FSC®-C109304) and PEFC Chain of Custody certification. Also, there are constructions available that correspond to BRE Global Green Guide generic elements which achieve a Summary Rating of A+.

Councillor John Anglin, Lead Member for Regeneration and Economy at South Tyneside Council, said:
“The new building needed to reflect our Sustainable Development goals, which is why we opted for low environmental impact and sustainable materials with a Green Guide rating of A or A+ whenever we could. This is to help us with our target of receiving a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating. We were also keen to ensure all timber used on the library was FSC® certified or equivalent.”

Both the Kingspan TEK Cladding Panel and Kingspan TEK Building System panels are now available in a 172 mm thickness, achieving even lower U-values of 0.17 W/m2.K or better.

Staying in shape with Kingspan KoolDuct

KoolDuct System

Thanks to the compact design of The Kingspan KoolDuct System and KoolDuct Panels, Kingspan KoolDuct Delivery Partner, cg3 Systems, has achieved a millimetre-perfect HVAC fit-out of a new multi-million pound sports and leisure complex located in Newry city centre, Northern Ireland.

When it opens this summer, Phase 2 of the Newry Leisure Centre will further Newry, Mourne and Down Council’s aim to create a modern facility. Built to a high specification, the building promotes both accessibility and functionality whilst also offering value for money for ratepayers and customers. Adding to the Centre’s existing swimming facilities, the new development will accommodate eight-court and four-court sports halls, handball and squash courts, dry changing facilities, a fitness suite, soft-play and crèche areas, a café and facilities.

The Kingspan KoolDuct System and circular ductwork formed from Kingspan KoolDuct Panels offered an innovative HVAC solution for this phase. Unlike galvanised steel, both systems are pre-insulated using Kingspan KoolDuct panels. This design eliminates the time-consuming lagging stage and can save as much as 200 mm ceiling void space in a single dimension. This was a key consideration on the project as cg3 Systems had to install the new ductwork within pre-castellated steel beams.

Rori Millar, BIM and Coordination Manager at cg3 Systems, discussed the challenge:
“Due to the castellated beams, it was essential that the quantities of ductwork were almost millimetre perfect. This required careful clash detection implementation, measurement and coordination. The 3D modelling as part of the BIM process at pre-site stage, in addition to guidance and support from Kingspan’s superb technical team, ensured the ductwork systems would fit properly. Onsite, it was installed exactly in accordance with the 3D models, and included many offsets and pieces which simply wouldn’t have been possible with sheet-metal type ductwork.”

The rigid phenolic core of Kingspan KoolDuct Panels can achieve thermal conductivities as low as 0.022 W/m.K and have been assigned a BRE Green Guide Summary Rating of A. Ductwork fabricated from The Kingspan KoolDuct System can reduce air–leakage rates to a fraction of those typical of rectangular sheet metal ductwork. This innovative System thus offers the triple benefits of cutting energy use, cutting operational carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, and cutting costs.

Kingspan KoolDuct Panels are suitable for internal and external applications. Their rigid phenolic insulation core is manufactured with a blowing agent that has zero Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) and low Global Warming Potential (GWP).

TBA Protective Technologies procures protective clothing manufacturer

TBA CAC acquisition

TBA Protective Technologies (TBA-PT), the globally-renowned manufacturer of high performance and heat resistant textiles, has acquired protective clothing manufacturer, CAC Industrial Products, as part of its strategy to expand its in-house fabrication capabilities.

For over 145 years, TBA-PT has been at the forefront of the UK’s industrial textile industry, making numerous advancements in the design, manufacture and fabrication of high performance textiles and products for a variety of demanding applications. Over the past few years, the business has gone from strength to strength, helped by a continuous programme of research and development, staff training, community work and considerable investment into its manufacturing plant in Rochdale. The new acquisition will allow the company to close the gap between the technical material they manufacture and their final applications. As Managing Director of TBA Protective Technologies, Mark Lineker, explains:

“We have worked with CAC Industrial Products for over 30 years, supplying them with a lot of our high-performance fabrics to use in their protective clothing ranges. There was always a strong relationship of collaboration between our two companies on fabrication and the acquisition was a logical step for TBA-PT to keep the range going. It’s an exciting prospect to move heavily into the PPE market, which is an area we have been looking to explore with our own MED suit range. The CAC range of products will definitely complement this work.”

Previously based in Milford Haven, CAC Industrial Products manufactured high quality protective clothing for a variety of industrial and service industries. All their machinery, raw materials and products have been transferred to TBA-PT’s Rochdale manufacturing facility where staff have recently completed a training programme delivered by previous Director of CAC, Graham Parish, and have begun taking orders from the former company’s customer base. As many of CAC’s products are CE Marked, TBA-PT will be audited accordingly to ensure this assurance of quality is carried through.

EPIC releases BIM guidance paper

BIM guidance paper

The Government mandated that all publicly funded projects should have adopted BIM level 2 in 2016, but many businesses still don’t fully understand what this entails. To help raise awareness, EPIC has released a guidance document on Building Information Modelling (BIM).

Despite the expectation of all public projects using BIM, the National BIM Report 2016 states that only 54% are currently aware and are using it on some projects[1]. With BIM level 3 on the horizon, EPIC felt it pertinent to produce a guidance paper to aid members and industry professionals to better understand the importance of effectively using BIM now. The document describes what Building Information Modelling is and how it is employed to allow the design team to generate a comprehensive virtual 3D model of a building. It covers successful implementation of BIM, the software available, the use of insulated panels in BIM, and the future of digital modelling.

Using BIM can help companies improve standards, enhance profitability, stream line processes, and make product information more easily accessible; inevitably leading to more satisfied customers. According to the NBS 2016 report, 71% of design teams expect manufacturers to provide BIM objects. Having manufacturers’ objects in BIM allows more accurate specification, costings, and quantities. These are predominately available through manufacturers’ websites, as well as BIMstore and the National BIM Library. Accessing objects through the appropriate sources ensures that the most up-to-date data is used.

BIM ensures better management of information at every stage of a building’s life to reduce waste, drive better value, optimise performance, and provide a better end product for the user.

The latest guide can now be downloaded for free from:


To keep up with the latest news, visit the website or follow EPIC’s company page on LinkedIn:


Kingspan Insulation releases new BIM objects

Kingspan Insulation BIM objects

Kingspan Insulation is helping to streamline the specification process with the release of over 500 new flat roof BIM objects. The objects, available on Kingspan’s popular U-value Calculator app and website (, cover a wide range of green and warm roof constructions, all featuring high performance Kingspan Therma range products.

From the intuitive U-value Calculator menu, users can specify their desired U-value and adjust virtually any element within the construction. By ticking a request box at the end of the calculation process, users can now have the BIM object for their Therma range flat roof construction sent to them via email along with their U-value calculation. The objects are attached as a ZIP file in both IFC and Revit formats.

Kingspan Insulation’s U-value Calculator is available as a free app for Apple, Android and Windows devices. It includes over 8000 calculations for floor, wall and roofs, all pre-calculated by a member of Kingspan Insulation’s Technical Services Department who is approved under the ‘BBA/TIMSA Scheme for Calculation Competency Part 1 – U-value and condensation risk’. Where appropriate, these calculations also take into account fixings and bridging factors.

In addition to the new flat roof objects, a wide range of Kingspan Insulation BIM product objects are also available for free download from the NBS National BIM Library.

Kingspan helps with ambitious expansion for Tate Modern

Tate Modern Kingspan FM Duct

Over 1,300 m2 of Kingspan Kooltherm FM Duct Insulation has been installed as part of the iconic new extension to Tate Modern in London.

The 64.5 m tall tower, named the Switch House, adjoins Tate Modern’s existing home within the former Bankside Power Station to provide over 5000 m2 of new exhibition space spread over ten levels. The new extension officially opened to the public in June 2016. In addition to the top-class film, video, photography and performance areas it also provides excellent practical learning facilities for all ages.

Kingspan Kooltherm FM Duct Insulation was installed on the project in a 40 mm thickness. The insulation has been developed to provide premium performance and comprises a fibre-free rigid thermoset phenolic insulation core, which is Class 0 as defined by Building Regulations, and is externally faced with an aluminium vapour barrier foil and internally faced with glass tissue. Its rigid nature ensures the specified thickness is maintained at the corners, and can help to create a continuous and fully sealed vapour barrier for a more aesthetically pleasing finish.

Kingspan Kooltherm FM Duct Insulation has a thermal conductivity of 0.022 W/m.K or better, has a BRE Green Guide A+ rating, is manufactured under a BS EN ISO 14001: 2004 scheme, and is produced at Kingspan Insulation’s Pembridge and Selby manufacturing facilities which are certified to BES 6001 ‘Excellent’.

Kootherm fitted on fire station of the future

Kooltherm Avon Fire Station

Avon Fire & Rescue Service is not only saving lives, but also energy and money with the construction of a new fire station at one of its existing sites in central Bristol, insulated with Kingspan Kooltherm K15 Rainscreen Board.

Faced with shrinking budgets, the Service started to look for savings within its property portfolio, identifying Temple Back Fire Station as a target for improvement. The size and poorly insulated design of the existing building, which also houses the service’s headquarters, makes it uneconomically expensive to maintain and run having been built back in 1973. To address this, the building is being demolished in stages, with a new three storey replacement fire station being erected at the rear of the plot on a much smaller footprint, whilst the remaining space is to be sold or let.

Willmott Dixon are overseeing the design and construction of the station, alongside AHR and AECOM consultants. To keep running costs low, the energy performance of the building envelope was a key consideration. A target U-value of 0.23 W/m2.K was set for the external walls of the building, and to help achieve this, without reducing useable internal space, Kingspan Kooltherm K15 Rainscreen Board was specified.

The Class 0 rated product offers outstanding insulation performance, with thermal conductivities as low as 0.020 W/m.k. It was fitted behind a dark grey zinc cladding on the entrance corner of the building, helping to break-up the largely brick façade.

The new station is targeting a BREEAM rating of ‘Very Good’ and Kingspan Kooltherm K15 Rainscreen Board was also specified to support this effort. The insulation is rated ‘Excellent’ under the demanding BES 6001: Responsible Sourcing of Construction Products standard and holds a BRE Green Guide Summary Rating of A+. As a result, it can directly contribute towards the award of credits within the Materials section of the BREEAM assessment.

Kingspan Kooltherm K15 Rainscreen Board was also the first insulation board for use in rainscreen cladding applications to have achieved LABC Registered Detail Status. This helped to streamline the Building Control checking and approval process on the project, saving both time and cost.

Chairman of Avon Fire Authority, Councillor Peter Abraham, commented:
“Designing the building from scratch has allowed us to meet the needs of this modern service, in a smaller building that will be considerably more efficient to run. We are committed to ensuring the same level of fire cover we currently provide in the city centre and this new station will serve the community well for many years.”

Retiring in style with Kingspan OPTIM-R

Kingspan OPTIM-R terrace

Residents at the Tennyson Wharf Care Home are enjoying seamless access to a recessed, marina facing roof terrace, thanks in part to the ultra-slim design of the Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System.

The 60-bed care home was constructed by Castleoak and is located within the gated Burton Waters community. Barchester Healthcare facility offers specialist residential care supported with top class amenities including sensory gardens, a café and a Memory Lane Community area for dementia care.

To take advantage of the marina surroundings, the property has been designed with several spacious balconies and a small roof terrace which adjoins the third storey common room. As residents have a varied degree of mobility, accessibility was at the forefront of considerations during the design of the building, with care taken to ensure a level threshold on all doors to gardens and external spaces. To achieve this on the  recessed top storey roof terrace, whilst keeping the area well insulated, the Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System was specified.

The next generation insulation solution features vacuum insulation panels (VIPs) with a microporous core which is evacuated, encased and sealed in a thin, gas-tight envelope. With an aged design value thermal conductivity 0.007 W/m.K, Kingspan OPTIM-R VIPs can deliver an insulating performance up to five times better than other commonly available insulation materials. The panels are accompanied with Kingspan OPTIM-R flex infill strips which can be cut to fit unusual dimensions.

The 40 mm Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System was installed on the terrace below Kingspan Thermaroof TR27 LPC/FM by Manor Roofing. Clear layouts were provided by Kingspan’s specialist technical team, ensuring that the required U-value could be achieved with a minimal construction thickness.

20-40 mm thick Kingspan OPTIM-R panels are also certified under the demanding BDA Agrément® scheme. This independent certification is accepted by NHBC and the LABC and can help to fast-track projects through the procedures and approvals processes, further reducing project costs.

EPIC releases airtightness guidance paper

Airtightness guidance paper The most recent changes to the Regulations for the conservation of ‘Fuel and Power’ in England, Wales and Scotland brought a toughening of the airtightness requirements for new buildings. Research has shown that a significant number of non-domestic buildings fail to meet even previous standards. To help specifiers and contractors avoid the costly risk of noncompliance, Engineered Panels in Construction (EPIC) has produced a handy guidance paper.

The document, which looks at airtightness in non-domestic buildings, is the first in a series from EPIC which will cover diverse industry topics, including BIM and safe handling of insulated panels. Guidance papers can be viewed or downloaded for free from the EPIC website at:

‘Improved airtightness standards for non-domestic buildings’ provides a breakdown of the latest regulatory requirements in England, Scotland and Wales. It also presents findings from EPIC’s own research into the airtightness of existing buildings. This research shows a significant number of buildings fail to meet the previous Regulations and highlights the need for far greater attention to be paid to limiting air loss.

Finally, the paper provides clear recommendations and guidance on achieving the regulatory airtightness levels with insulated panel constructions. It looks at all aspects of the construction process, from initial design to complex detailing and installation.

To keep up with the latest news, visit the website or follow EPIC’s company page on LinkedIn:

Kingspan Pipe Insulation installed on French Ministry of Defence

French Ministry of Defence

Photo credit: Laurent-Zylberman-Graphix-Images

The optimum thermal performance and environmental credentials of Kingspan Kooltherm FM Pipe Insulation have been used to full effect at the French Ministry of Defence’s new €4.2 billion headquarters in Paris.

Known as the Hexagone Balard, the striking 16.5 hectare facility unites all the Ministry of Defence departments under one roof for the first time, enabling it to become a more collaborative and efficient organisation. The vast project was constructed by Bouygues and contains 3,125 offices, numerous conference rooms and an underground command-and-control centre; in addition to public facilities such as a health centre, children’s day-care services and a swimming pool.

Reflective of the Ministry’s drive for innovation and efficiency, the Balard complex has been designed to achieve HQE (Haute Qualitié Environnementale) certification, the French standard for environmentally conscious buildings. It functions as an almost self-sufficient high performing ecosystem, with a range of state-of-the-art solutions such as its 4,000 m2 photovoltaic roof. To ensure services ran in accordance to the strict requirements, 10,000 m2 of Kingspan Kooltherm FM Pipe Insulation in various thicknesses was installed on hot and cold water pipework networks throughout the development.

The product’s fibre-free insulation core delivers outstanding energy performance, with thermal conductivities as low as 0.025 W/m∙K. This allowed the desired thermal performance to be achieved with the slimmest possible solution, saving vital service space whilst contributing towards the energy requirements of the BREEAM Assessment, in which the building achieved a rating of “Very Good”. In addition to guaranteeing a constant high energy performance, the system will also help to keep the long-term energy costs of the building to a minimum.

Kingspan Kooltherm FM Pipe Insulation holds BDA Agrément® certification, LABC Registered Detail & Warranty, and is available as a freely downloadable BIM object from either or the BIMStore website.  Additionally, it has also been awarded a best-in-class Eurofins Indoor Air Comfort Gold certificate, recognising it as outstanding material according to the VOC Indoor Air Quality emissions regulations.

In addition to its free Pipeline Technical Advisory Service which can be contacted on 0808 168 7363, Kingspan Industrial Insulation has now also launched Premier and Premier Plus Services. These services support purchases of Kingspan Kooltherm FM Pipe Insulation and the Kooltherm FM Complete Pipe Insulation System (incorporating insulated pipe support inserts and fire sleeves) respectively, delivering clear advice and guidance at every stage in a project, from the initial specification, to site visits and certification.


Kingspan Cleanroom Systems prescribed for Dublin hospital

Kingspan Cleanroom Systems

The flexibility, and reliable core performance, of the Kingspan UltraTech Precision Cleanroom System has helped to create an innovative new Aseptic Compounding Unit (ACU) at St James’s Hospital, Dublin.

As the largest academic teaching hospital in Dublin, St James’s Hospital is dedicated to being a place in which education and research in health science can thrive for the benefit of both its staff and patients. In line with this commitment, the new ACU, designed and built by BAM Ireland, provides the hospital with the facility to manufacture chemotherapy and biological preparations that are specially tailored to an individual patient’s requirements.

The Kingspan UltraTech Precision Cleanroom System was specified by BAM Ireland to produce a modular cleanroom within the hospital’s Pharmacy Department. The system comprises of high performance insulated panels with a flat non-porous surface to both sides. This surface aids cleaning and is resistant to mould, moisture ingress and bacterial growth, ensuring a controlled, sterile environment which minimises airborne particles and microorganisms.

The walls and ceiling of the ACU were constructed from 80 mm thick UltraTech Precision ECOsafe PIR panels. The panels have a thermal conductivity of 0.019 W/m.K and are resistant to attack from mould, fungi, mildew and vermin. They also allow for fully flush details, including integrated cleanroom doors with a concealed interlocking system and glazed units built into the panels themselves. These details, in addition to the UltraTech Adjustable Aluminium Flooring Profile engineered to provide a fully flush wall panel to floor detail, ensured that the cleanroom met the high requirements of the European Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) Grade C. The pre-finished corners of the system also meant that no additional exterior corner details were required, improving the aesthetics and making it easy to clean in accordance with ISO 11998.

For the internal partition walls, IPN QuadCore panels were specified due to their superior fire protection as Michael Matthews, Technical Manager at BAM Contractors Ireland, explains:

“From an economical and performance point of view, the Quadcore panels were a more cost efficient solution for the internal walls, in comparison to mineral fibre or an aluminium honeycomb system. Having the panels fully certified to FM 4882 requirements also made it easy to get approval from the local fire authority.”

All the surfaces of the cleanroom are coated with Kingspan CLEANsafe 55 to meet the demanding cleaning protocols of the hospital. The chemically inert polyethylene terephthalate (PET) film and polyester (PE) paint makes it suitable for any humid and chemically aggressive internal environment.

Michael Matthews commented further on the construction:

“The panelised system was easy to install, allowing us to establish a fast track construction programme whilst maintaining the required clean build protocols. The flexibility the system offered not only meant the services could easily be incorporated, but also that we were able to complete the cleanroom envelope at an early stage of the project, and then remove walls to move in the client’s equipment at a later stage of construction.”

All Kingspan UltraTech Cleanroom Systems are backed by exceptional support service from Kingspan’s experienced technical team, from initial concept through to the detailed 3D design, manufacture, installation and project handover.

The Systems are fully compliant with the cGMP and ISO 14644 Cleanroom & Associated Controlled Environments Standards, and are covered under the Kingspan Ultimate Panel Guarantee. All Kingspan manufacturing plants are ISO 14001 accredited and the system panels are fully recyclable at end of life.


EcoTherm launches new Eco-Cavity Full Fill

Eco-Cavity Full FillEcoTherm Insulation is pleased to announce the launch of EcoTherm Eco-Cavity Full Fill. The new foil faced, rigid PIR insulation board has been designed to allow simple compliance with the energy requirements of the Building Regulation and Standards, without requiring alterations to standard wall designs.

EcoTherm Eco-Cavity Full Fill is available in standard thicknesses of 90 mm, 115 mm and 140 mm thicknesses. The insulation board dimensions are sized to co-ordinate with brick and block sizes, allowing them to be quickly installed with standard wall tie methods whilst their tongue and groove edges offer a superior fit and increased resistance to moisture penetration. A residual 10 mm cavity should be retained when installing the boards to accommodate mortar squeeze and to provide further protection against moisture ingress.

Dean Buttle, Sales Director for EcoTherm Insulation, commented:

“This Full Fill product is a great addition to our range of cost effective insulation solutions. As with all our products, it is easy to handle which ensures a fuss-free installation. With a thermal conductivity of 0.022 W/m.K, Eco-Cavity Full Fill is excellent value for money as it helps to achieve a compliant U-value without requiring the cavity width to be expanded.”

EcoTherm Eco-Cavity Full Fill has achieved British Board of Agrément (BBA) certification which demonstrates compliance with UK Building Regulations. The certification independently verifies that the product satisfies the requirements for thermal performance, water resistance, condensation, behaviour in relation to fire, and durability.

All EcoTherm Insulation boards are manufactured with a blowing agent which has zero Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) and have a low Global Warming Potential (GWP). For further information, a datasheet sheet is available from:

TBA Protective Technologies finds Rochdale’s manufacturing stars of the future

TBA Manufacturing Matters

Middleton Technology School has been declared the winners of the ‘Manufacturing Matters’ Competition, which ran in partnership with Rochdale manufacturer, TBA Protective Technologies (TBA-PT).

Launched in October, the ‘Manufacturing Matters’ competition challenged three local high schools to develop an idea for a manufacturable product, and create corresponding production, marketing and financial plans. These ideas were presented to a board of judges made up of members from TBA-PT’s management team and heads of other local companies, such as HMG Paints and Smith Goodfellow PR.

There were some fantastic products presented, from Kingsway Park High School’s heat resistant and slash-proof apron to a fire-resistant engine cover by Holy Family School. The winning product focused on fire hazards after the students from Middleton Technology School researched the causes of fire in the festive season. The result was a thorough business plan which detailed the manufacture and marketing of a stunning but functional Christmas tree star. The proposal described what would happen in the event of the tree catching fire as a result of faulty electrics or overheating. The metal star would unfold and release a fire blanket that deprives the blaze of oxygen, preventing further damage or harm in the home.

The ideas were scored against a set of strict criteria which considered how effectively entrants used the brief, their creativity, the thoroughness of the marketing and financial strategies, their overall business plan, and whether they had found a gap in the market.

Middleton Technology School was awarded the prize money of £300, along with the TBA-PT Community Shield. Perhaps the most exciting part of their prize is that their product is currently being assessed by TBA-PT’s Research & Development Division to judge the viability of the idea for manufacture in the near future.

Jo Manfred, Skills & Participation Development Officer at Rochdale Borough Council, commented:
“The ‘Manufacturing Matters’ Competition has been a fantastic opportunity for all the schools involved. By working in partnership with a local employer to create a new product, the students have been able to learn first-hand the innovation happening in the local manufacturing industry. The experience of working closely with a business mentor will give them the knowledge, expertise and skills employers look for when interviewing new candidates. The project is a first for both the schools and TBA-PT.  It also meets the government’s agenda for ‘Good Career Guidance’. The new report highlights the need for young people to have interaction and encounters with employers, employees and experience in a workplace.”

Mark Lineker, General Manager of TBA Protective Technologies, concluded the event by saying:
“Whilst our congratulations go to the winners, all of the schools involved should be extremely proud of what they have achieved in the relatively short time frame. We were impressed by the enthusiasm shown by the students, evidenced by the scope of great ideas and research they came up with. We at TBA-PT feel privileged to have been able to share the wonders of manufacturing with the local community and hope that the experience will encourage all the students to consider a future career in the industry. We are already looking forward to the next event!”

The competition forms part of a larger commitment by the company to the development and continuation of British manufacturing. It is set to invest £700,000 into its manufacturing plant in Rochdale over the next two years, enabling the company to bring the production and testing it previously outsourced to the Netherlands back to the UK. Plans include creating a cutting-edge facility on their factory site to house new machinery and testing areas to further develop their production of high performance fabrics.