News

New product in Knauf Insulation portfolio: VACUUM INSULATED PANELS – superinsulation for “super” savings
By Knauf Australia on May 18, 2015

Knauf Insulation has set sustainable development – which includes environmental protection and a commitment to provide the most energy-efficient products and solutions – as one of its main priorities.

Knauf Insulation has set sustainable development – which includes environmental protection and a commitment to provide the most energy-efficient products and solutions – as one of its main priorities. It is therefore no coincidence that part of the company’s revenues are re-invested into advanced research and development; and now specifically into the construction of a new line for the manufacture of superinsulators – vacuum insulated panels (VIP's) –which boast some of the lowest thermal conductivity values on the market.

What exactly are VIP’s – vacuum insulated panels?

Vacuum insulated panels are comprised of a glass fibre core hermetically enclosed in a special thin multilayer foil. During the manufacturing process all of the air is pumped out of the panel. According to this manufacturing procedure gases and moisture are not able to penetrate and enter the panel. At the same time this design enables the panel to attain a minimal thermal conductivity value below 0,003 W/mK.

VIP's have been recognized and available on the market for more than 20 years. Initially vacuum insulated panels were used as insulators in aerospace technology and for various military applications. Due to increasingly demanding energy efficiency values and features, their application was gradually extended to serve other areas as well. VIP’s represent one of the most efficient insulation solutions available on the market, as their name "superinsulation" so accurately implies.

Key benefits / advantages of vacuum insulated panels:

  • extraordinarily low thermal conductivity (˂ 3 mW/mK) ensures thermal insulation in applications up to 10 times more efficient compared to traditional materials and technologies;
  • extremely thin insulation layers (10-25 mm) increase internal refrigerator storage volumes;
  • superinsulating properties are guaranteed for a period of up to 15 years;
  • sustainable insulation solution: Knauf Insulation vacuum insulated panels are the only panels produced in Europe with both RAL and EUCEB certificates.

VIP applications

Changing people’s minds and mindsets about efficient energy use, reinforcing the awareness that primary energy sources are limited, and that energy production brings with it unwanted side effects that are, to a large extent, harmful to the environment requires serious efforts. Such concerns have moved manufacturers of various applications in which insulation plays an important role, to concentrate efforts and resources toward developing alternative, more energy efficient and sustainable materials.

Vacuum insulated panels are primarily intended precisely for applications where energy savings are paramount, while at the same time ensuring both optimum temperature conditions and increased internal storage volumes of various applications. They are intended for use in applications that consume particularly high amounts of energy – as insulation for refrigerators and freezers.  Refrigerators and freezers employing this type of insulation are classified as Energy Class A+++, which means they consume 60 percent less energy than the same refrigerator model classified as Class A. Through its entire service life, a typical combined energy-efficient refrigerator (230 litres of cooling space and 86 litres of freezer space), classified as Energy Class A+++, can save the user up to 800 EUR compared to a similar Energy Class A model, depending on the price of electricity in a given market.

Other applications:

  • insulation of refrigerated trucks and other refrigerated transport systems; 
  • insulation of medical and pharmaceutical refrigerators used for the distribution and storage of temperature-sensitive medicines and pharmaceutical products;
  • insulation of vending machines and cold storage units.

Knauf Insulation vacuum insulated panels will be sold under the brand name Knauf Insulation UltraSpaceTM.

By initiating the manufacture of vacuum insulated panels Knauf Insulation once again demonstrates its commitment to innovative insulation solutions that respond to the challenges of the future. At the same time, Knauf Insulation shows both its character and determination to firmly adhere to certain basic principles, i.e. to act in accordance with the guidelines and framework of sustainable development. By launching a new product range on the European market the common European energy policy too, which is aimed at reducing primary energy consumption by 20%, is that much closer to becoming a reality.