Contemporary buildings are more than just bricks and mortar. Today’s designers and builders can choose from a huge range of energy efficient materials to create buildings that combine interior comfort with lower energy costs and reduced environmental impact.
When renovating old homes or planning a new development, the right combination of design and insulation can make a big difference to a building’s performance. It’s important, for example, to avoid thermal bridges which can cause condensation. Therefore, designers and builders should pay attention to the thermal performance of insulation materials they choose. The lambda value, also known as thermal conductivity, expresses how well a material insulates in perfect conditions: the lower the value, the better it performs.
Securing energy efficient constructions
However, energy-efficient construction depends on more than just insulation with a low lambda value. Will the insulation fit easily into the building? If there are even small air gaps, for example when insulating irregular shapes like an old roof or wall, this can have a dramatic impact on energy performance.
And because it’s typically 30-50 years before a building is changed or upgraded, how the material behaves over the long term is an important consideration: