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Knauf succeeds in major heritage redevelopment in heart of Birmingham

Knauf succeeds in major heritage redevelopment in heart of Birmingham

Knauf UK

Birmingham’s Grade II listed Municipal Bank, a significant historical site, had sat unoccupied since 2006 before being purchased by The University of Birmingham which planned to convert it to a civic space that could benefit all.Built in the 1930s by T. Cecil Howitt, a refurbishment and extension of the building was planned to provide the University with a brand new city-centre based campus. The bank’s redevelopment has since created a learning space for students as well as exhibition and event spaces, meeting rooms and public areas, including a café.Architect, Glancy Nicholls designed the extension and refurbishment. The build was complex, having to accommodate and preserve many heritage features. Main contractor, Galliford Try chose to specify Knauf for a number of internal elements, including Knauf Shaftwall and Knauf plasterboards, due to their experiences of using Knauf products. Drywall Contracts were responsible for the installation of Knauf products, which proved highly compatible with the build’s heritage elements. Honouring the Bank’s historical architectural standing was at the core of the project’s design and construction. “Working around historic architecture, there were a lot of bespoke elements to this project. It was key that modernisation didn’t take away from any historic features and working with Knauf products helped achieve the project with that mindset,” said Jon Jacznik, Director of Drywall Contracts.  For example, a technique called Ashlar plastering was used to create a tile affect that mimicked heritage designs on Knauf boards and partitions. Freddy Maxwell-Heart, Site Manager at Galliford Try, noted that “Knauf successfully worked with heritage plasterers to achieve this effect consistently.”Another integral aspect of the build was the need to bring the 100-year-old building up to modern specifications so that it could meet today’s building regulations. Several Knauf high performance boards were used on this project, their characteristics lending themselves to the practical and regulatory requirements of the build.Knauf Impact Panel, for example, was chosen for use in areas of The Exchange which are open to the general public due to its impact resistance and robust qualities.Being a mixed-use space with offices and events spaces, thorough sound proofing was needed in places. For this, Knauf Sound Panel and Shield Plus was used to ensure a suitable and comfortable environment throughout the building.Knauf Fire Panel also featured heavily in this project. This helped ensure the building’s fire standards met stringent regulations, especially given its Grade II listed status.Construction of The Exchange took place at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 during a nationwide lockdown. This was a challenging time for the industry, but Jon remarked that “Knauf continued to supply systems to ensure client requirements were met with as little disruption as possible.”Similarly happy with the level of support Knauf offered, Freddy observed that “Knauf were very helpful throughout and, Project Technical Manager, Tom Chamberlain was particularly helpful in addressing technical issues.”Jon agreed, adding that “Tom worked closely with the contract manager to overcome all the nuances and oddities the building threw at us. There was a lot of coordination between parties and frequent changes to the plans which Knauf responded to promptly.”Opened in September 2021, the re-developed Exchange offers a significant contribution to the heart of Birmingham and the city’s wider Arena Central masterplan.
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Why Knauf were first choice for Ladderswood Development

Why Knauf were first choice for Ladderswood Development

Knauf UK

The Ladderswood Development is a regenerative project based in the London Borough of Enfield. There are 112 properties, all overlooking a central sculpted landscaped area within the development. Given the interior shape and goal of creating comfortable living spaces, both contractor and installer agreed that Knauf offered the performance they needed. The project was award to drylining specialists S&R London Ltd. in April 2022. Interior work began in January 2023, and they were tasked with bringing the internal aspects of the development up to specification. Elion Mucaj, Quality Manager for S&R London explains. “When we got the project at Ladderswood early last year, we were initially asked how we were going to ensure it was completed to a high standard that would make the development attractive to future residents. We explained our operating process, and what we were aiming to do to ensure that the client’s needs were met.”“Once the client was satisfied, they mentioned they wanted Knauf products used internally because of their previous experience using their range. Coincidentally that was our thoughts too! We knew when we saw the specification, we wanted to use Knauf throughout to hit those performance targets.”Meeting the brief.Being a residential development, fire performance and safety was one of the key considerations for product choice. To achieve this, it was decided that Knauf Fire Panel should be used, with Elion commenting. “Knauf Fire Panel was brilliant; it has the fire performance we needed for the project and of course the warranty it comes with means that we had peace of mind that the product would be secure.” To achieve the level of acoustic performance and comfort for the apartments, Knauf Soundshield Plus was put to good use. “We knew we needed a solution which would ensure minimal sound transfer between the homes. From using the product before and speaking with Knauf, we opted for Soundshield Plus. It was ideal for use within the main walls of the properties.” To round out the overall performance of the properties, Knauf Moisture Panel was used in each of the bathrooms. Chosen for its excellent moisture resistant properties, Moisture Panel helped to minimise any potential damp-related issues and reduce snagging.“Knauf Moisture Panel was the first thing we thought of when it came to the bathrooms. We knew that it is perfect for places that get very humid, and with its material makeup it can really reduce the amount of damp related issues that could develop in the properties. In the long run, it would save everyone a lot of hassle.”Supporting factors.When looking back over the reasons for specifying Knauf for the interior, Elion recalls it wasn’t just the performance guarantees which helped swing the decision.“We have used Knauf in the past and the benefits of using their products are many, but the key thing for us is the technical support. It’s phenomenal and is available as and when we need it.”“Whenever we had questions, we’d get in touch with Knauf and they’d happily answer, no matter how big or small. They also made regular site visits to make sure that everything was going well and that we were all on the same page.”With performance being at the heart of the offer, Knauf was the first choice for both S&R London Ltd. and the client, Mulalley. However, it highlights the importance of the support behind the products which can make the difference on site. Being able to quickly answer technical queries, offer visits to site, and performance guarantees, all adds up for a compelling manufacturer offer. 
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Extensive Knauf products installed on Carlton Academy

Extensive Knauf products installed on Carlton Academy

Knauf UK

Knauf products have been used throughout the redevelopment of Carlton Academy, a secondary school in Nottinghamshire. The school was awarded £2.6m, an investment that allowed them to build ten new classrooms on site to house a wide variety of subjects and service a growing catchment area.
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Saracens High School touches down with Knauf ThroughWall

Saracens High School touches down with Knauf ThroughWall

Knauf UK

Saracens High School in Colindale, North West London is set to benefit from a brand new building constructed using the Knauf ThroughWall system. The new building will become a hub for the local area including pupils, parents, staff and the wider community.
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Knauf Drywall Systems specified for luxury Manchester residential development

Knauf Drywall Systems specified for luxury Manchester residential development

Knauf UK

A new residential complex in Manchester city centre is benefitting from full Knauf drywall systems to provide high-quality homes for its new residents.
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The Gables, Musker Street

The Gables, Musker Street

Knauf Insulation Ltd

When Formby Point Construction needed to specify the insulation for The Gables, an exclusive housing development in Crosby, the project had multiple objectives. Firstly, the company wanted to go beyond the thermal and acoustic requirements outlined in the building regulations. Secondly, with such a large number of applications across multiple construction types, Formby Point Construction wanted to use one manufacturer and supplier to specify the correct product for each application. This would ensure ease of installation and ensure the project was delivered on budget.With this in mind, Formby Point Construction, consulted Formby-based builders’ merchant, Huws Gray, who referred it to Knauf Insulation.For the separating floor applications, Knauf Insulation recommended Knauf Insulation OmniFit® Roll 40, a versatile, non-combustible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification Glass Mineral Wool insulation that provides both excellent thermal and acoustic performance. Knauf Insulation also recommended Knauf Insulation DriTherm® Cavity Slab 32 for the masonry cavity external walls, Knauf Insulation Masonry Party Wall Slab for separating walls to comply with Document E and Knauf Insulation Loft Roll 40 for the insulation of the loft.As well as considering the comfort of the homeowner, Formby Point Construction considers the welfare of its employees as part of its decision making. In addition to excellent thermal and acoustic performance, Knauf Insulation scored highly on this aspect thanks to the ECOSE® Technology, its patented sustainable bio-based binder. Products manufactured with ECOSE® Technology contain no added phenol or formaldehyde, and they are 70% less energy-intensive than products manufactured with traditional formaldehyde-based binder. They have no odour, are softer to touch, making them much more pleasant to handle and install. They have also achieved the best possible Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort, contributing to a high level of indoor air quality for installers and homeowners alike.Once the specification had been agreed, Knauf Insulation then worked with Huws Gray to price the project and take advantage of volume discounts. This meant that Formby Point Construction had some additional budget for insulation. The company therefore decided to install Knauf Insulation Acoustic Roll within the stud walls between all rooms, going above the minimum standard required between bathrooms and bedrooms outlined in Document E.Thanks to Formby Point Construction’s commitment to going above and beyond the regulations, and Knauf Insulation’s high performance Glass Mineral Wool insulation, homeowners at The Gables will enjoy quieter, warmer homes. To see how Knauf Insulation can help with your insulation needs, check out our Housebuilders Hub.https://www.knaufinsulation.co.uk/Housebuilders-hub
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Harpercrewe Partnership

Harpercrewe Partnership

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Knauf Insulation is delighted to have been appointed as preferred insulation supplier to innovative new housebuilder, HarperCrewe. In addition to supplying their Supafil® and Loft Roll glass mineral wool solutions, Knauf Insulation will provide support to HarperCrewe’s team, from the design phase through to installation. Their first collaboration is already underway at The Steadings, HarperCrewe’s new neighbourhood of homes in Cirencester, and future projects look set to benefit from the same end-to-end support service. John Nunney, Commercial Director for HarperCrewe explains, “Outstanding build quality is at the forefront of our approach but, as a smaller business, it can be harder to get first pick at the best products on the market. Supafil® 34 is in demand because it’s straightforward to install and it works as it’s supposed to, so our relationship with Knauf Insulation is very important to us. It means we have consistent access to reliable, high-quality products that form an essential part of our builds.” Working closely with HarperCrewe’s design team from the very beginning of the process, Knauf Insulation’s Housing Specification Managers have already helped the business to navigate the latest updates to Part L of the Building Regulations. Advice on SAP calculations and detail drawings, as well as guidance to optimise their insulation specification have helped HarperCrewe’s team meet the new requirements, without compromising on their existing priorities. Of course, getting the specification right is just the first step, so Knauf Insulation’s support will continue well beyond the design phase. As projects move into construction, Housing Specification Managers will attend site start meetings and discuss each plot with HarperCrewe’s team. This will allow them to identify the right time for installation to take place, preventing the product’s performance from being compromised by subsequent construction work. When that time comes, Knauf Insulation’s Regional Technical Managers will be on-hand to offer advice to site teams as needed and ensure a smooth installation.  For projects using Supafil® insulation, HarperCrewe will have access to a list of Approved Supafil® Installers, who have the necessary training and experience to deliver a high-quality installation. Those installers will in turn have access to KinetiK®, Knauf Insulation’s app-based site reporting system that creates an instant digital record of installations.  Using the app on their mobile device, the installer will simply select their site and plot number, take a photo of each elevation, scan the unique QR code on each pack of Supafil®, and install the product as specified. HarperCrewe will then receive confirmation that the specified product has been installed. Not only will this provide additional confidence in the specification integrity, it will also streamline HarperCrewe’s reporting process, giving them more time to focus on the ‘big picture’ aspects of their development. 
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The Building Centre

The Building Centre

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeThe Building Centre, a central information point for all sectors of the construction industry, recently refurbished its London based headquarters. The second stage has seen Knauf Insulation Acoustic Roll supplied to the Construction Products Association, the UK Green Building Council and Design for Homes offices located on the first floor.In order to maximise all potential space available to the offices, it was essential to select a product that would take up as little space as possible, while satisfying the environmental and acoustic criteria required to achieve the BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating.SolutionTo accomplish this, 50mm Acoustic Roll was specified as it is lightweight, flexible, non-combustible and provides a high level of sound absorption, furthermore, it has been specifically designed for friction fitting between members at 400mm and 600mm centres. Acoustic Roll significantly improves the sound insulation performance of partitions whilst at the same time delivering improved thermal and fire performance. Plus, thanks to ECOSE® Technology, offers outstanding environmental credentials.Knauf Insulation products with ECOSE® Technology are made with a formaldehyde free binder technology derived from rapidly renewable, bio-based materials, which reduces embodied energy and delivers superior environmental sustainability. The insulation doesn’t look or feel like any other insulation. It is naturally brown in colour as there are no artificial colours or dyes added and it produces a ‘super softer’, odourless and easier to handle insulation.Colin Henderson, CEO of the Building Centre comments on how specifying Knauf Insulation was an easy decision to make: "After looking at the requirements and from our existing knowledge of Knauf Insulation, we knew the company would be able to meet all our needs quickly and efficiently."Maria Morgan, Market Manager – Building, Non Residential at Knauf Insulation explains: “Our unique position in having a broad product range, coupled with our expertise within the industry, enabled us to fully advise and install the appropriate insulation solution for the Building Centre.”
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Knauf Acoustic Ceiling products used at St Richard Reynolds Catholic College Twickenham

Knauf Acoustic Ceiling products used at St Richard Reynolds Catholic College Twickenham

Knauf UK

A range of acoustic ceiling products from Knauf are controlling noise in new classrooms, corridors, halls and kitchens of the St Richard Reynolds Catholic College in Twickenham.
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Knauf Airless Finish specified for luxury North London Care Home Development

Knauf Airless Finish specified for luxury North London Care Home Development

Knauf UK

To ensure residents in this new luxury North London care home would feel entirely comfortable, the most efficient and futureproof materials were chosen. That’s why main contractor Wates specified Knauf Airless Finish for use throughout the development of the new Signature Care Home in Barnet.
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Citu Homes

Citu Homes

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Four years ago, sustainable developer Citu set out to create homes 10 times more energy efficient than typical UK houses. To do this, the company invested in a state-of-the-art production facility where all the components for its properties are built offsite.Thermal performance is critical to energy efficiency. Citu wanted to go far beyond the regulations to achieve wall build-ups with an extremely low U-value of just 0.10W/m2K. This is at least three times better than the U-value achieved in most new build homes and fifteen times better than older houses.Adding offsite capabilityCitu turned to Knauf Insulation for advice and support in developing the offsite capability required for this level of thermal performance. Knauf Insulation’s Technical Support Team undertook extensive calculations and recommended the Blowing Plate Insulation System to install Supafil® Frame – a high performance, non-combustible blowing wool.Supafil® Blowing Wool lends itself to offsite production because it completely fills the cavity, without any voids even around complex penetrations – something that can occur when insulation slabs or rolls are cut to size. It is also a dry process, so operatives are not exposed to any harmful chemicals and it doesn’t require a dedicated production line.Instead, the system comprises a blowing machine and a filling plate. The system is modular allowing for phased investment. Citu opted to install the blowing machine in phase one, which allowed them to manually fill the panels. Phase two saw the addition of the blowing plate, semi-automating the process.Supafil® Frame can be run by a single operator, fits easily into the existing production line, and can even be moved quickly and swiftly to other areas in the manufacturing facility depending on Citu’s volume capacity requirements.Knauf Insulation’s Technical Support Team provided full training and support during each phase of installation.Insulating the panelsCitu homes are manufactured from wooden panels with a 300mm cavity. The blowing plate is positioned over the panel completely covering the cavity. Supafil® is then blown into the wooden frame to the specific parameters of each panel. All cavities are filled to the correct thickness; something that has been carefully calculated and tested by the Knauf Insulation Technical Support Team to ensure settlement does not occur. And because the machine is programmed to install the exact quantity of insulation required, there’s no waste.Supafil® is a high performance Blowing Wool. It is non-combustible with Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification as well as providing excellent thermal and acoustic performance. It contains a silicone-based additive to ensure it is water repellent.As well as providing excellent thermal performance, Supafil® has great sustainability credentials. Knauf Insulation’s Glass Mineral Wool contains up to 80% of recycled content. This reduces the amount of virgin materials used and prevents around 60,000 tonnes of glass a year (350 million bottles) from going to landfill or polluting the environment. Knauf Insulation has also invested in advanced compression packaging. This means there’s less packaging used, so fewer lorries on the roads leading to a reduction in transport carbon emissions. All of which helps to support Citu’s goal that every home should be carbon zero to manufacture.By combining modern methods of construction with the very highest levels of thermal performance, Citu and Knauf Insulation are creating homes that reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions – homes that are fit for the future.
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Environment at the heart of Eden/A3 Bailey

Environment at the heart of Eden/A3 Bailey

Knauf UK

The 115,000 square feet, 12-storey office scheme Eden/A3 Bailey in Manchester is designed with the ambitious goal of becoming one of the most environmentally friendly offices in the UK.  This ambitious goal included one of the biggest green wall façades in Europe in accordance with Passivhaus principles. As such, it was imperative the products specified were both sustainable and high performing to meet the demands of the brief.The challenge would be to strike a balance between performance on site and sustainability in the long term. This meant suppliers who could demonstrate a commitment to sustainability within their supply chain were at an advantage. Combined with their quality and high-performance products, Knauf were chosen.Neil O’Toole, sub-contractor for Linear Projects elaborates: “Given the aim of the project, we needed to use specialist products. This combined with the familiarity we had with Knauf meant that they were specified for use within the building itself.”Rahul Vishwakarma, the architect for the project from Make Architects continues. “Knauf offered guidance not just on their own products but on overall wall build ups which assisted in making design decisions . Furthermore, we found that their sustainability credentials aligned with the project.”The specialist products used included Knauf Shaftwall. Designed to meet fire safety requirements and building codes, Shaftwall provides high levels of fire protection enhancing the level of safety within the building for occupants. Using Knauf Shaftwall also allows for greater space optimization, by allowing for the creation of fire-rated vertical shafts, including elevator or stairway enclosures and horizontal shafts for electrical and plumbing services. Ensuring centralized services within designated areas and freeing up space.What made Knauf Shaftwall really stand out for Rahul though was the versatility it offered. As he explains. “Knauf Shaftwall was perfect for use on this project because it can be adapted to different building designs and configurations. Giving us much greater flexibility in terms of the build-up and layout, thus allowing us to customize the system to meet the specific needs of the project. That it is durable and long-lasting was an additional benefit.”A range of Knauf High Performance Plasterboard was used to meet the acoustic requirements of the office space. Knauf Soundshield Plus and Performance Plus were used to ensure a quieter more comfortable working environment and to provide Knauf Performer wall types as partitions throughout the building.  Furthermore, Knauf boards contain Recycled Gypsum along with Natural and FGD gypsum to form a strong core and system performance.Knauf Encasement system with Fire Panel was used to meet the safety requirements for the building, by offering fire protection to encase the steel work throughout the building.Knauf Test Data was used to enable the boards to contribute to the holistic performance required. This was particularly attractive for the architects given the use of heat pumps throughout the building.Knauf Ready Mix Finish provided a sustainable addition to the products used. As not only did reduce the amount of water that needed to be introduced into the build, but it also reduced the amount of waste produced. This is because any unused product can be put back into the bucket and used for another project.Whilst these products assisted in the development of the Eden/A3 Bailey, there were challenges.Something that Neil elaborated on. “At the start there wasn’t a full design, which meant we had to be agile and smart with how we approached the build. We were having to adapt as we went along, something we were only able to do thanks to Knauf. Their familiarity with the systems we were using meant they gave us advice on the best way to put things together. And if we had any questions or needed help, they were always on hand to provide it.”Neil Shaw, Contractor at B&K expanded on these issues. “Initially, there were a few challenges regarding getting a fire system installed. We needed one that had fire test data to meet the requirements of the project and be compliant with regulations. We tested a few systems and eventually settled on Knauf Fire Panel as it was the system that best met our needs.”Throughout all these challenges, both Neils felt that Knauf were incredibly helpful and supportive.As Neil O’Toole explained. “I’ve known some of the team at Knauf for a long time. They were fantastic, they assisted with the design and provided site audits, ensuring that any questions we had were answered and any help we needed was provided.”Rahul agreed with the sentiment. “The project is quite a tricky one in terms of what we are hoping to achieve, but the team at Knauf are brilliant. It’s been really helpful being able to talk to the team at Knauf who are really knowledgeable about the field and are always quick to respond to any questions we’ve got.”The project is ongoing, but the signs are there that it will achieve its aim of being one of the most environmentally friendly building within the UK.
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Alumet HQ

Alumet HQ

Knauf Insulation Ltd

CHALLENGEAs part of a full exterior refurbishment, building envelope contractor, Alumet, required a new façade system that would transform and modernise the exterior of the Jubilee House building, which was originally installed in the early 1970s. Coupled with this was the requirement to improve thermal and energy efficiencies.SOLUTIONKnauf Insulation supplied its Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab to ensure optimal fire, thermal and acoustic performance. The key to Knauf Insulation securing the project was the ability to provide in depth technical support, including complex 3D heat flow modelling calculations which took into account the specific system brackets, which act as a significant cold bridge within rainscreen cladding systems.Knauf Insulation’s Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab was installed on the brick facade of the existing building, which once complete, significantly improved the U-value thus reducing the heat loss through the wall.The insulation layer is a fundamental component of any successful rainscreen cladding system and mineral wool insulation delivers a number of advantages for this type of application. Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is a Rock Mineral Wool slab containing a water repellent additive, designed for use on masonry wall constructions and as the outer insulation layer in steel frame projects.Quick and easy to install, the product is simple to cut and the slabs knit together to create a snug fit, with no need to tape the joints as may be required with rigid foam boards – ensuring maximum acoustic and thermal performance."We wanted to turn our headquarters into a thermally efficient building and to really project a modern ‘green’ image. The Schueco Façade system, along with Knauf Insulation’s products, helped us to achieve this as well as dramatically reducing our carbon output.We have received some fantastic feedback from local residents saying how good the new façade looks and coupled with the improved thermal efficiencies, we are very pleased."- Alumet Director, Dean Walton
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Royal Shakespeare Theatre

Royal Shakespeare Theatre

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeWork is underway to create a new theatre that will transform the existing 1932 Royal Shakespeare Theatre whilst retaining the original Art Deco and Victorian elements of the building. Due for completion during 2010, the theatre will give artists and audiences alike the best environment in which to perform and enjoy Shakespeare with improved public spaces both inside and surrounding the theatre.The challenge for the project design is to blend the key aspects of the existing buildings with the new theatre designs. Specialist roofing contractor, Varla (UK) Limited were awarded the contract to design, manufacture and install the zinc standing seam roof and wall package. Varla (UK) Limited challenged Knauf Insulation to propose a solution to meet the demanding specification for this unique project.SolutionKnauf Insulation provided detailed ongoing technical support during the design stages of the project and proposed solutions based on the results of unique three-dimensional heat loss calculations. The unique 3-D calculation support service, provided by the Technical Advisory Centre, was an integral part of the product specification process to ensure that the exact thickness recommendations were proposed in order to meet the project’s specific U-value requirements.Knauf Insulation were able to provide a solution that met all of Varla’s insulation requirements by using 160mm of Knauf Insulation FactoryClad Roll 32. This is a flexible, lightweight roll of resilient Glass Mineral Wool with exceptionally high tear strength and a thermal conductivity of just 0.032 W/mK.In addition, Knauf Insulation FactoryClad Roll 32, recommended for this project, is manufactured from Glass Mineral Wool, which is ideal for limiting the spread of fire since it holds a Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification for non-combustibility. The product will not burn, will not give off toxic smoke nor will it suddenly ignite in a fire due to ‘flashover’. For public buildings such as this, superior fire performance is crucial.
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Knauf Presto Render creates pleasing aesthetic for South Hams District Council Development

Knauf Presto Render creates pleasing aesthetic for South Hams District Council Development

Knauf UK

Proposing the Regal range of colours – developed by Knauf for its Presto render range – has enabled Cavanna Homes to work closely with South Hams District Council’s planning department to achieve a pleasing external aesthetic at its Origins development, set in the heart of the Devon village of Dartington.
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Birmingham City University

Birmingham City University

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeTargeted with achieving a minimum BREEAM rating of Excellent and with only a short window of time to complete the project, Associated Architects, who designed the building, needed insulation products that would meet strict thermal and environmental requirements – as well as a manufacturer that could offer quick turnaround times and a high level of technical support.SolutionWith the help of Knauf Insulation specification manager, Marc Lawson, a through wall solution using 5,000m² of Knauf Insulation’s 100mm Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab – a rock mineral wool slab containing a water repellent additive, specifically designed for rainscreen cladding systems was used. It is quick and easy to install and is simple to cut and fit around brackets. The slabs knit together with no need to tape the joints – ensuring maximum acoustic and thermal performance, with no air gaps. Knauf Insulation’s Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is also non-combustible and has the highest Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification, as well as excellent sound absorption performance.To further enhance the thermal properties of the element, 10,500m² of Knauf Insulation’s Rocksilk® Flexible Slab 100mm, was installed in two layers within the SFS system. Designed to friction fit between metal studs, rafters and joists, Rocksilk® Flexible Slab is a multi-purpose rock mineral wool insulation slab, which provides excellent thermal and acoustic performance.Chris Kinman, Senior Design Manager at Willmott Dixon commented; “Knauf Insulation’s products are easy to handle and cut which makes them very easy to use on site. The first phase of the project has gone well, and the architect has adopted a similar approach to Phase 2 - which is testament to the excellent performance so far. Overall, we have been very impressed by the help and support we have received from Knauf Insulation on the project, and we have since recommended them to other colleagues."Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab and Rocksilk® Flexible Slab rock mineral wool products are made with ECOSE® Technology, a formaldehyde-free binder derived from rapidly renewable materials, instead of traditional petro-based chemicals used in other insulation. Additionally, ECOSE® Technology is up to 70% less energy intensive than traditional binders.
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Full Systems Go At Tolson's Mill

Full Systems Go At Tolson's Mill

Knauf UK

Tolson's Mill, Tamworth is a new £16 million development consisting of 51 canal side apartments and 10 town houses. Set within a five-storey textile factory, each apartment and house is set to retain the industrial character of the grade 2 listed Mill building. Leading the project development was Brookland Group with subcontractors V&D Interiors fitting out each of the living spaces. In designing the building, Crosby Granger Architects placed safety and comfort as the main priorities for product specification.Given the listed nature of the building, ensuring the materials used met and exceeded safety needs was critical. Likewise, ensuring acoustic performance would be key given the luxurious nature of the apartments and town houses.    For Calvin Challis, Commercial Manager at V&D Interiors, using Knauf products was the sensible thing to do. “The goals of the architect were to ensure a quality, soundproof interior which meant that the product specification met and exceeded this expectation. That’s where Knauf came in. Not only were they always there to help and ready to listen if we had any questions, but their product were also the right choice to achieve the goals specified by the architect.” Attaining this level of performance would be achieved using Knauf performance systems products including metal partitions, which not only offer speed advantages on site, but enhance fire protection as well.Meeting the acoustic needs of the brief, standard 12.5mm and 15mm Knauf Soundshield Plus were used on the walls and ceilings. Soundshield Plus provided enhanced acoustic performance and excellent fire resistance. Importantly, Soundshield Plus can give up to 54Db acoustic sound reduction when used as part of a Knauf system. Getting the perfect finish throughout was achieving by using a mixture of Knauf finishing products. This included jointing tape, intumescent and acoustic mastic for their fire and acoustic performance attributes, and Knauf Fill and Finish. The result was a high-quality finish on partition walls with necessary performance built in.Ensuring consistency throughout the interior, Knauf Ceilings were specified for their acoustic performance and peace of mind both ceiling and wall systems would complement each other. “From a specification point of view, it was critical we knew that all products used would achieve the performance required. This was the main point for the architects but for us on site, having all the product come from a single supplier made it easier to source the right materials and know they’d install and work together easily” Calvin recalls. While efficiencies were gained on site by using Knauf systems, one of the biggest advantages this approach offered was the peace of mind through warranties. Calvin explained why this was so important: “The Knauf System Performance Warranty meant everyone knew the products would perform as intended for the lifetime of the system, with guarantees in place in the unlikely event of something going wrong.” “Having that security in place was vital for all involved, it meant we could get the support we need for installation and the main contractors and client would be protected going forwards. Especially on a listed building project, you need to have that peace of mind in place.”For added reassurance, Calvin recalls how Knauf would provide onsite support in the form of inspections “Knauf were brilliant, if we needed any help or assistance, they were more than happy to help. They came to the site a few times, to inspect the installation and provide some guidance if we were unsure of something. This was particularly helpful when it came to checking the acoustic ratings. They were able to check the acoustic ratings and ensure that they met the requirements, and that the client was satisfied.” The apartments that form part of the luxury residential development at Tolson's Mills and Tamworth were completed in November of 2022, with the houses scheduled to be finished in June 2023.
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Knauf Ceiling Solutions Touches Down at Bristol Airport

Knauf Ceiling Solutions Touches Down at Bristol Airport

Knauf Ceiling Solutions Limited

An £8m administrative hub at Bristol Airport has a bespoke Knauf Ceiling Solutions systems fitted throughout. A visually intricate honeycomb effect ceiling required the meticulous installation of suspended hexagonal acoustic rafts with precise spacing. A bespoke DONN® grid ensured each MINERAL Sonic Element was positioned equidistant to each other. Stride Treglown Associate Architects commented, “The internal aesthetic is an honest expression of the steel structure and exposed services installation. However, these two factors require careful acoustic consideration. The result is a series of randomly arranged, hexagonal suspended rafts that provide acoustic function, and a strong visual statement.”
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Glasgow Museum of Transport

Glasgow Museum of Transport

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeThe much acclaimed architect Zaha Hadid created the design for the Riverside Museum, which has already been dubbed ‘Glasgow’s Guggenheim’.The new riverside Museum provides an exciting new home for Glasgow’s transport collection. The development has a riverside location on a site where the River Clyde meets Glasgow’s other main river the Kelvin, and is adjacent to Glasgow Harbour.The dynamic new Riverside Museum displays Glasgow’s rich industrial heritage, which stems from the River Clyde. The Tall Ship is berthed alongside the Museum, creating a fantastic experience in this stunning setting.The brief for design and build roofing specialist Varla (UK) Limited was to find a flexible insulation that could meet the demanding U - value of 0.20 W/m2K that was continuous over both the walls and the complex 18,000 square metre roof. The Glasgow Museum of Transport is a complex, heavily engineered design and was the first major UK project for the renowned architect Zaha Hadid.Specialist Roofing contractor, Varla (UK) Limited started the search for a suitable material by contacting many insulation suppliers and holding supplier seminars at Varla’s Chester offices, challenging suppliers to propose a solution to meet the demanding specification for this unique project.SolutionVarla (UK) Limited chose to use Knauf Insulation’s FactoryClad Roll 32, a flexible insulation that meets the demanding U-value of 0.20 W/m2K across both the roof and walls.Rigid foam boards were ruled out early on, as they could not be fitted to the building’s complex curves. There was also a limited cladding zone that could not be altered. Many types of insulation were considered, but glass mineral wool roll provided the best thermal efficiency. The key to Knauf Insulation’s products being specified on this project was its ability to provide in-depth technical support, including complex three-dimensional heat flow modelling calculations. This allowed Knauf Insulation to produce a solution that met all of Varla’s insulation requirements by using a double layer of 100mm Knauf Insulation FactoryClad Roll 32. This is a flexible, lightweight roll of resilient Glass Mineral Wool with exceptionally high tear strength and a thermal conductivity of just 0.032 W/mK.In addition, Knauf Insulation FactoryClad Roll 32 is ideal for limiting the spread of fire since it holds a Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification for non-combustibility and will not burn. Nor will it give off toxic smoke or suddenly ignite in a fire due to ‘flashover’. For public buildings such as this, superior fire performance is crucial.Once Varla (UK) Limited had decided on Knauf Insulation, it leaned on them heavily for technical support, utilising the unique 3D heat loss calculation support service, which ensured the correct product thickness was specified to meet the demanding project requirements.
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Denby Dale Passivhaus

Denby Dale Passivhaus

Knauf Insulation Ltd

CHALLENGEAn ambitious project, and one of the first certified PassivHaus homes in the UK - the Denby Dale PassivHaus in West Yorkshire, had to to use 90% less energy for space heating than the average UK dwelling – with a space heating need of only 15 kWh/m2/ year. The three-bedroom property is the first UK Passivhaus to be built in a traditional style using cavity wall construction and had to be built to a tight budget of £141,000.SOLUTION“We decided to go down the cavity wall path and arrived at the design for several reasons including: planning restrictions, thermal store, cost, and maybe most important of all, buildability,” explains Bill Butcher, Project Leader.Excellent performing insulation is obviously fundamental to Passivhaus construction and the Denby Dale house has 300mm Knauf Insulation DriTherm® Cavity Slab 32 in the walls, 500mm Knauf Insulation Loft Roll 44 in the roof void (both of which incorporate ECOSE® Technology) along with 225mm of high-performing Polyfoam® Floorboard Standard* insulation in the floor.“We’re fully filling the cavity with glass mineral wool insulation for the walls above ground, because it helps minimise air movement in the cavity and offers greater flexibility, fitting snugly around the ties, openings and imperfections of the masonry surface.” comments Bill Butcher.Economics, performance, availability, ease of fitting and reducing thermal bypass were all among the benefits of the Knauf Insulation products chosen.*No longer sold through Knauf Insulation.BENEFITSGlass Mineral Wool was specified over rigid insulation to ensure a tight thermal fit. Knauf Insulation DriTherm® Cavity Slabs are flexible enough to eliminate air gaps and prevent heat loss due to their inherent ability to knit together at joints between the slabs. If rigid insulation is used and fitted badly with too many gaps, air movement around and between the insulation boards is increased, which can drastically reduce its insulation value.Knauf Insulation DriTherm® Cavity Slabs are BBA Certified for all exposure zones and formally guaranteed for 50 years to prevent the transmission of liquid water from the outer masonry leaf to the inner masonry leaf.In addition to its thermal performance glass mineral wool also has other sustainable features. In manufacture it uses a high content of recycled glass bottles and requires less overall energy consumption than some alternative products, resulting in less carbon emissions. In addition, it can be recycled at the end of a building’s life and has zero GWP and zero ODP. ECOSE® Technology further extends these established green credentials as it is manufactured with 70% less energy than traditional binders and the products contain no dyes or added formaldehyde – providing the ideal solution to the eco-friendly house.
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Thames Quarter, Reading

Thames Quarter, Reading

Knauf Insulation Ltd

At 73m, Thames Quarter is Reading’s second tallest building. It will include 315 built-to-rent apartments, a hub for tech start-ups, a cinema, dining rooms, roof terraces and a residents’ lounge overlooking the Thames.Specialist contractor Precision Façades chose high-performance insulation solutions that would not only contribute to homeowner comfort but would also be kinder to installers. The company specified more than 20,000m2 of Knauf Insulation’s Glass and Rock Mineral Wool insulation for the project.Steve McGowen, Managing Director of Precision Façades explained that Knauf Insulation is the company’s preferred supplier thanks to the high level of support it provides. He said: “Knauf Insulation’s Sales Team are always on hand to help us with our orders, they also have a Technical Team who can provide 3D U-value calculations, and crucially, they are always able to deliver our orders quickly.”The design called for a variety of façade panels manufactured from different materials and finishes, which affected the thermal performance required across the build. To accommodate this, Precision Façades used Knauf Insulation Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab in four different thicknesses (50mm, 100mm, 140mm and 190mm) for the rainscreen façade. It also used 100mm and 150mm OmniFit® Roll 40 within the steel framing system.Both Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab and OmniFit® Roll 40 offer the required levels of thermal performance. They are non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification so will not contribute to the development or spread of fire should it occur. This means both products meet the requirements of building regulations in England and Wales banning the use of combustible materials on all buildings over 18m. Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab has also been certified by the British Board of Agrément (BBA) for use in high rise residential applications.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab and OmniFit® Roll 40 also have excellent sound absorption characteristics ensuring quiet spaces for residents, even while moviegoers enjoy surround sound.In addition to delivering the required thermal performance, both Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab and OmniFit® Roll 40 improve installer’s experience of using Mineral Wool. This is because they are manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation's unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol.Products made with ECOSE® Technology are soft to touch and easy to handle. They generate low levels of dust and VOCs and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort.As well as being kind to installers, ECOSE® Technology is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders.Thanks to Knauf Insulation’s Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab and OmniFit® Roll 40, residents at Thames Quarter will enjoy warm, safe, and comfortable homes, built with insulation that is kinder to installers and the environment.
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Guy Nelson Hall

Guy Nelson Hall

Knauf Ceiling Solutions Limited

Knauf integral in Warwick Hall development.The Knauf team has played a significant role in the  specification and design process during recent  construction at one of the oldest schools in England, working alongside award winning Associated Architects to produce a masterclass in acoustic  performance.The site consisted of an existing hall, which was used for assemblies, performances and functions. This hall was built in the 1960s and suffered from a series of failings which impacted its flexibility and usefulness.The proposal for the Warwick Hall was an opportunity to build a physical embodiment of Warwick School’s  academic excellence, prosperity and ambition, which saw the existing school hall stripped back to its structural frame and heavily modified to provide a state-of-the-art, revitalised and flexible school hall with  a large double height entrance foyer, two performance  studios and other ancillary spaces. The brief was given to the team at Associated Architects and they quickly relied on the quality of materials and service provided by Knauf.
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Salamander Street, Edinburgh

Salamander Street, Edinburgh

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Salamander Street is a mid-market rent initiative that provides high quality affordable homes in the heart of Leith, Edinburgh. It comprises 199 flats and maisonettes across six storeys of accommodation, constructed over a basement car park.It was designed by 7N Architects, which specified Knauf Insulation’s 50mm Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab to insulate the ventilated façade. They chose this product because it met the brief’s two critical performance factors: thermal performance and fire safety.It is a Rock Mineral Wool insulation slab with a thermal conductivity of 0.034W/mK, so it delivers the required U-value of 0.16 W/m2K. It is non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification and is BBA certified for use in a wide range of build-ups in high rise buildings. This means it complies with Building Regulations in Scotland that restrict the use of combustible materials on most buildings over 11m.The Salamander Street development was overseen by main contractor Cruden Building East with sub-contractor Soundtex responsible for installing the insulation.It was constructed using an Ancon Brick Restraint System. Ancon has undertaken independent third-party tests to demonstrate that its restraint system does not require a compression sleeve when used in conjunction with Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab under 180mm thick. This provided a huge saving in labour costs for Soundtex as fasteners are usually inserted into compression sleeves by hand.Throughout the build, Knauf Insulation’s Specification Team attended regular project meetings and conducted site visits to check the quality and progress of installation. Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is optimised for ease of installation and improved robustness, making it easy to manoeuvre into position. At Salamander Street, the Specification Team noted the uniformity of installation and perfectly staggered joints. This is important because it ensures there are no gaps, which could reduce thermal and acoustic performance – a common issue with rigid foam board insulation.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation's unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. It is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders, so it is more environmentally friendly.Products made with ECOSE® Technology are soft to touch and easy to handle. They generate low levels of dust and VOCs and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort.The Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab insulation was installed in conjunction with Knauf Windliner sheathing board for maximum performance.Thanks to Knauf Insulation, the residents of Salamander Street will enjoy warm, cosy homes that meet the highest standards of fire safety.
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The Malthouse, Bristol

The Malthouse, Bristol

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Today’s students demand a high standard of living, and with 348 beds, separate study and social spaces, a dining room and gym, The Malthouse, new luxury apartments in Wilder Street, Bristol have been designed to provide it.Spread over five stories, the external envelope features a combination of different coloured brickwork and rainscreen cladding. AWW Architects had specified non-combustible insulation to meet the requirements of building regulations in England and Wales, which ban the use of combustible materials on the external walls of certain types of buildings over 18m.With this in mind, main contractors Watkin Jones contacted Knauf Insulation’s Technical Support Team to determine which insulation solution would be most suitable to achieve the required U-value of 0.19 W/m²K. They also wanted to determine whether the wall build-up would prevent cold bridging and act as a vapour barrier.The Technical Support Team undertook complex 3D U-value calculations and condensation analysis. 3D U-value calculations completed in line with BS EN 10211 are used for rainscreen projects because they are the most accurate way to ensure a building’s thermal performance matches the initial design. The Technical Support Team provided a fast turnaround on the enquiry and recommended 100mm Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab as the best solution for the project.Manufactured from Rock Mineral Wool, Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification. This means it will not contribute to the development or spread of fire should it occur. As well as having a British Board of Agrément (BBA) certificate for high rise residential applications, it also has a BBA certificate for use behind masonry façades – making it suitable for the different applications on The Malthouse.In addition to fire safety and thermal performance, Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab offers excellent sound reduction characteristics.More than 8,000m2 of Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab insulation was supplied to the development by builders’ merchants M Markovitz Ltd.Like all Knauf Insulation products, Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab has been designed for ease of installation. Improved robustness means it is easy to manoeuvre into place and it can be installed either way round without compromising performance.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation's unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. Products made with ECOSE® Technology are soft to touch and easy to handle. They generate low levels of dust and VOCs and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort. ECOSE® Technology is also made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders, so it is more environmentally friendly.Thanks to the technical support from Knauf Insulation, The Malthouse will deliver the students a comfortable, warm, quiet and safe environment where they can enjoy their university years.
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Marks & Spencer, Cheshire Oaks

Marks & Spencer, Cheshire Oaks

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeTo insulate one of Marks and Spencer’s most carbon efficient premier stores with a holistic approach taken towards key sustainability factors such as water, carbon, biodiversity, the community, materials and waste to landfill.SolutionKnauf Insulation’s FactoryClad Roll 40 was utilised within the 11,000m2 multi-wave form standing seam roof, which was supplied by Euroclad to achieve an outstanding visual, functional and environmentally friendly element of the store design, plus achieving a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating. The number of BREEAM credits available from using Knauf Insulation’s Factory Clad Roll 40, played a part in its specification for Marks and Spencer’s flagship sustainable retail store at Cheshire Oaks.Gethin Williams, Euroclad’s Elite Systems Coordinator said: “FactoryClad Roll 40, in 280mm, has a 90/90 lambda value, a generic BRE Green Guide rating of A+ and has excellent thermal and acoustic properties. Thanks to these many characteristics, we thought it was perfect for this project, which resulted in it achieving the relevant BREEAM credits. Being lightweight, flexible and with a high tear strength, fitting was fast and error free, ensuring the thermal integrity was uncompromised.”Knauf Insulation’s FactoryClad Roll 40 is manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, has a thermal conductivity of 0.040W/mK and also has the highest possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification when tested in accordance with BS EN 13501-1.In addition to this, Knauf Insulation’s mineral wool products with ECOSE Technology benefit from a revolutionary, bio-based, formaldehyde-free binder technology, based on rapidly renewable materials, instead of petro-based chemicals – delivering superior environmental sustainability and enhancing the environmental credentials without affecting the thermal, acoustic or fire performance. What’s more Knauf Insulation FactoryClad Roll 40 represents no known threat to the environment and has zero Ozone Depletion Potential and zero Global Warming Potential."Knauf Insulation FactoryClad Roll 40, in 280mm, has a 90/90 lambda value, a generic BRE Green Guide rating of A+ and has excellent thermal and acoustic properties. Thanks to these many characteristics, we thought it was perfect for this project, which resulted in it achieving the relevant BREEAM credits. Being lightweight, flexible and with a high tear strength, fitting was fast and error free, ensuring the thermal integrity was uncompromised."- Gethin Williams, Euroclad’s Elite Systems Coordinator
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The Benjamin Foundation

The Benjamin Foundation

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeThe project, at Winston Court in North Walsham, is organised by Benjamin’s Building Company, part of The Benjamin Foundation. Benjamin’s Building Company is a social enterprise that works to create homes, training and employment opportunities for vulnerable people. The ambitious venture will see the development of four, self-contained accommodation units. Seeking help in this task, The Benjamin Foundation turned to CRASH for assistance in locating suppliers and materials.SolutionKnauf Insulation donated 24 rolls of 150mm Loft Roll insulation, 48 rolls of 140mm Rafter Roll 40 and 72 rolls of 110mm FrameTherm® 32 for the project. These glass mineral wool insulation products are extremely easy to handle and install, being lightweight and easily cut to size, benefiting the large project.BenefitsBy its nature, Loft Roll is non- combustible and classified as Euroclass A1 to BS EN ISO 13501-1, a crucial requirement to any public building. Additionally, Loft Roll insulation has been manufactured with ECOSE® Technology which delivers superior environmental performance, as the binder technology is up to 70 per cent less energy intensive than traditional binders. The technology has been developed for Knauf Insulation’s glass and rock mineral wool products, enhancing their environmental credentials without affecting the thermal, acoustic or fire performance. Insulation products made with ECOSE® Technology contain no dye or artificial colours – the colour is completely natural.
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Vaughan Way, Leicester

Vaughan Way, Leicester

Knauf Insulation Ltd

The Vaughan Way development in Leicester features state-of-the-art apartments above a two storey car park. While this gives residents the best of both worlds – city living and parking in a limited footprint – it represents a challenge for developers in the form of thermal bridging.Most car parks feature open walls to allow adequate ventilation of exhaust fumes, so the separating floor must be well insulated to prevent warm air from the flats escaping into the car park below. With this in mind, main contractor Winvic approached Knauf Insulation for advice on the best insulation to specify in order to achieve the specified U-value of 0.2 W/m²K.Knauf Insulation’s Technical Support Team conducted U-value calculations to determine the thickness of Soffit Linerboard required. They then worked closely with Winvic to provide technical advice to ensure all design considerations were addressed.Soffit Linerboard is a robust Rock Mineral Wool slab. It is a high-performance thermal insulation and offers excellent sound absorption to provide high levels of sound reduction; something residents will appreciate when their neighbours are parking below.Soffit Linerboard is also non-combustible, with an A1 Euroclass Reaction to Fire Classification, essential to comply with changes to the building regulations, as Vaughan Way will be more than 18m tall when complete.Soffit Linerboard is one of more than 40 Rock Mineral Wool insulation products produced at Knauf Insulation’s Queensferry plant. It is manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation’s unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. It is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable, and is less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binder, so it is more environmentally-friendly.Products made with ECOSE® Technology are soft to touch and easy to handle. They generate low levels of dust and VOCs, and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort.The insulation was delivered direct to site by distributors Encon in Nottingham and was installed by sub-contractors L Reynolds.From the additional warmth, to noise reduction and improved safety, adding Soffit Linerboard to the separating floor between the car park and flats will make city living even more pleasant for the residents of Vaughan Way.
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St Vincent de Paul, Newcastle

St Vincent de Paul, Newcastle

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeThe St Vincent New Bridges’ project is run by St Vincent de Paul, a homeless hostel that supports people who need to have a place to live and that require help to develop their daily living skills. When the charity acquired the Grade II listed building, a major refurbishment plan was put into action, and St Vincent de Paul approached CRASH for help with materials and construction work.SolutionKnauf Insulation donated over 520m2 of 100mm Knauf Insulation Loft Roll 40 for the project, which was installed by Giraffe Building Services Ltd. The Glass Mineral Wool insulation product is extremely easy to handle and install, being lightweight and easily cut to size, benefiting the large project.BenefitsBy its nature, Knauf Insulation Loft Roll 40 is non-combustible and classified as Euroclass A1 to BS EN ISO 13501-1, a crucial requirement to any public building. Additionally, Knauf Insulation Loft Roll 40 has been manufactured with ECOSE® Technology which delivers superior environmental performance, as the binder technology is up to 70 per cent less energy intensive than traditional binders. The technology has been developed for Knauf Insulation’s Glass and Rock Mineral Wool products, enhancing their environmental credentials without affecting the thermal, acoustic or fire performance. Insulation products made with ECOSE® Technology contain no dye or artificial colours – the colour is completely natural.
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Hockley Mills, Birmingham

Hockley Mills, Birmingham

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Hockley Mills is a prestigious mixed-used development comprising 395 apartments and 28,000 sq ft of commercial space with a new entrance to Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter train station – and undercroft parking for 116 cars. Car parks present a unique set of challenges when it comes to the specification of soffit insulation and Hockley Mills was no exception. There were several factors to consider. As well as thermal performance, fire safety was essential – so the insulation had to be non-combustible. It also needed to reduce sound transfer to ensure that residents and workers in the building would not be disturbed by vehicle noise from the car park below.  As well as meeting the specification factors, the insulation needed to be delivered to site in line with a tight schedule of works; an issue that was more complex than usual because it was set against a backdrop of heightened demand for construction products such as insulation.  Meeting the brief With this in mind, Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd approached its Strategic Supply Chain Partner, Knauf Insulation, to discuss the best available solutions for the Hockley Mills car park. Knauf Insulation’s Project Specification Team conducted U-value calculations and recommended that 130mm Rocksilk® Soffit Linerboard would meet the three critical performance requirements of the brief. Manufactured from rock mineral wool, Rocksilk® Soffit Linerboard is designed to insulate structural soffits in applications such as open-sided car parks. It has a thermal conductivity of just 0.034 W/mK, so will deliver the stipulated 0.16 W/m²K U-value required for the separating floor. It is non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification, so will not add to the development or spread of fire should it occur. This means it is ideal for enhancing the fire safety of buildings of any height.  Rocksilk® Soffit Linerboard also has excellent sound absorption characteristics, so will help to reduce the transfer of noise from the car park to the properties above. Additional advice and support Once the product had been determined, the Knauf Insulation Project Specification Team provided details about the choice of finish available. Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd opted for Rocksilk® Soffit Linerboard Standard, which has a black tissue face finish. The Project Specification Team also advised on the required fixing pattern and set up meetings with their fixing partner who provided technical support such as pull-out value calculations. When it was time for Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd to order the insulation for Hockley Mills, there were high levels of demand across the whole construction sector causing significant challenges in obtaining materials. Knauf Insulation worked closely with distributor CCF to ensure the insulation was delivered to site in full within the required time frame. Wider benefits of Rocksilk® Soffit Linerboard Standard Rocksilk® Soffit Linerboard Standard has been designed for ease of correct installation. Its enhanced rigidity means it can be quickly manoeuvred into place. Once in position, the mineral wool adapts to the substrate preventing gaps that can reduce thermal, fire and acoustic performance.  Rocksilk® Soffit Linerboard Standard also contributes to the building’s sustainability credentials. It is manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation’s unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. It is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable, and is less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders. Products made with ECOSE® Technology are soft to touch and easy to handle. They generate low levels of dust and VOCs, and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort. This means they are kinder to the installers who use them too. By working with their Strategic Supply Chain Partner, Knauf Insulation, Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd received the technical and product advice they needed to choose the right soffit solution for Hockley Mills. A solution that will ensure residents are warm and comfortable, as well as helping to keep them and their homes and businesses fire safe. 
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Millennium Dome (O2 Arena)

Millennium Dome (O2 Arena)

Knauf Insulation Ltd

ChallengeContractors Guaranteed Asphalt (GA) faced a unique conundrum regarding the insulation of the roof of the O2 Arena, the centre piece on the site of the former Millennium Dome and the first purpose-built music venue in London since The Royal Albert Hall in 1871.As the area required superior acoustic properties, a rock mineral wool product was the obvious solution, however the split-level roof form of the construction meant that loose mineral wool fibres were visible in the surrounding airspace. This is where Knauf Insulation’s technical expertise became invaluable! Knauf Insulation was able to specify a bespoke white-tissue-faced Krimpact product which entrapped the loose fibres.SolutionKnauf Insulation supplied over 100 tonnes of their Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab Extra at 150mm (2x75mm), a consistent, high density rock slab with superior impact and compression resistance. This material is designed to offer not only the acoustic performance required by such a venue, but also good thermal resistance and an excellent fire rating classification (Euroclass A1 non-combustible, the highest level possible). The white-tissue-faced product was suitable to be exposed to the elements, and later sprayed with a grey solar reflective paint to seal the surface and enable the product to camouflage into its environment.To make the project even more complicated, the cranes used in the production did not fit under the existing structure of the Dome which meant that the roof had to be constructed at ground level and lifted into its final position. This was no problem for Knauf Insulation thanks to its innovative Supakube delivery system, which meant the product could be delivered to the correct area of the project with minimum effort. Supakube uses advanced compression technology and strong packaging materials, which ensures the product is not only easy to store but can be delivered more efficiently saving time and reducing carbon emissions from delivery vehicles as more product can be loaded onto each lorry.
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SOYO Leeds, Quarry Hill

SOYO Leeds, Quarry Hill

Knauf Insulation Ltd

SOYO Leeds is a £300 million mixed use scheme that creates a new neighbourhood adjacent to the city’s cultural quarter.Designed by DLG Architects for Caddick Construction and Moda Living, SOYO Leeds will comprise residential and student accommodation, a hotel, restaurants, bars and offices. And at the heart of this new cultural centre is 10,000m2 of Knauf Insulation Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab.During the construction of the scheme’s 515 hotel-style rental apartments, rainscreen contractor Axis Envelope Solutions needed to source suitable, compliant insulation. So, it consulted Knauf Insulation, the UK’s only manufacturer of Glass and Rock Mineral Wool insulation, about which solutions would meet the required thermal and fire performance specification.Knauf Insulation’s Specification Team reviewed the architect’s drawings which included a build-up featuring a steel top hat. The company’s Technical Support Team then undertook 3D U-value calculations completed in line with BS EN 10211 to ensure the finished building’s performance matched the initial design.Because 3D U-value calculations are done in-house, the team were able to turn around the complex calculations in the time frame required.Once the calculations had been performed, Knauf Insulation recommended 180mm Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab as the optimal solution to meet the thermal requirements of the build.As well as exceptional thermal performance, Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is highly sound absorbent with excellent sound reduction capabilities. It is non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification so will not contribute to the development or spread of fire should it occur. This means it meets the requirements of building regulations in England and Wales banning the use of combustible materials on all buildings over 18m. In addition, Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is British Board of Agrément (BBA) certified for use in high rise buildings and for the broadest range of thicknesses and build-ups of any rainscreen solution on the market.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation's unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. It is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders, so it is more environmentally friendly.Products made with ECOSE® Technology are soft to touch and easy to handle. They generate low levels of dust and VOCs, and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab has been designed for ease of use. It is robust which makes it is easy to manoeuvre into place and it can be installed either way round without compromising performance. The Mineral Wool knits together and adapts to imperfections in the substrate, preventing air gaps that compromise thermal, fire and acoustic performance.Thanks to the responsiveness of Knauf Insulation’s Specification and Technical Support Teams, Axis Envelope Solutions was able to keep to the tight schedule required. As a result, the new tenants of the luxury apartments at SOYO Leeds will be able to enjoy homes built to provide the highest level of thermal, fire safety and acoustic performance in the centre of the city’s newest cultural hub.
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University of Salford, Manchester

University of Salford, Manchester

Knauf Insulation Ltd

The University of Salford’s new Science, Engineering and Environmental (SEE) building features a white RainScreen façade, punctuated by contrasting red window reveals with a sloping sill to form recessed windows. While this creates an impactful design statement, it proved challenging when it came to evaluating the RainScreen insulation performance.The thermal performance challengeFrom the outset the designers, in conjunction with the University, outlined a desire for non-combustible insulation. But the feature red reveal details meant there were restricted cavity widths near the windows, which would affect the depth of insulation that could be installed. Several Mineral Wool insulation manufacturers had been unwilling to undertake U-value calculations. This was because it was challenging to understand the weighted U-value across the different façade build-ups and determine the U-value uplift required to compensate for the shallower window reveal areas.Architects Sheppard Robson had previously worked with Knauf Insulation and engaged its Project Specification Team to discuss the challenge and develop calculations.After receiving the plans, Knauf Insulation undertook 3D U-value calculations and confirmed that they could meet the required thermal performance – and crucially it would mean no changes to the design or impact on the cavity widths.Accurate 3D U-value calculationsSo how could Knauf Insulation meet the brief when other manufacturers could not?The crucial factor was the type of U-value calculation used. Most manufacturers use the standard method, which calculates the U-value for the build-up without the metal substructure. Because this method doesn’t consider the effect of the metal penetration through the insulation, a blanket correction factor is added, which can lead to the under- or over-specification of insulation. Either way, it means that the insulation used in the finished project may not deliver the thermal performance that has been specified. And in the case of the SEE building, calculating the weighted U-value to prevent this was critical.Knauf Insulation uses numerical modelling (also known as 3D U-value calculations) as standard for all RainScreen façade projects. This methodology thermally models the build-up taking into account the complex interaction between the insulation and the bars and brackets of the steel framing system (SFS). As a result, it creates the most accurate available picture of how the build-up will perform thermally after construction.For the SEE building, the team undertook several different calculations changing elements of the build-up, including the substructure material and insulation widths, until they determined the optimal combination.High performance insulationBy using this rigorous calculation method, Knauf Insulation was able to meet the brief with a combination of 50mm and 160mm Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab, along with 200mm OmniFit® Slab 35.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is a Rock Mineral Wool slab that is BBA certified for use at any height and for the broadest range of thicknesses and build-ups on the market. It has a thermal conductivity of 0.034 W/mK.OmniFit® Slab 35, a Glass Mineral Wool slab with a thermal conductivity of 0.035 W/mK, is ideal for use in the SFS.Both Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab and OmniFit® Slab 35 are non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification so they will not contribute to the development or spread of fire should it occur. Thanks to their sound absorption characteristics, critical for low mass rainscreen structures, they will help create a quieter environment for the computer and science labs.A sustainable solutionThere was one other specification factor to consider – sustainability. The SEE building had been designed to minimise its environmental impact in line with the University of Salford’s campus master plan.Matthew Taylor, the project architect from Sheppard Robson, noted: “From early on, sustainability has been high on the SEE building agenda, including becoming one of the first all-electric University educational building.” The building will also be supported by photovoltaic panels on the roof.But while the use of renewable energy sources and high performance insulation will help lower the building’s operational carbon, it was important to keep embodied carbon to a minimum.Here Glass Mineral Wool scores highly too because it has the lowest embodied carbon of any mainstream insulation material.Knauf Insulation has proactively reduced the embodied carbon in its products over the years, as part of a broader set of activities to reduce its environmental impact. Specific actions to minimise its carbon footprint include initiatives to reduce road miles in both sourcing and distribution.For example, its Glass Mineral Wool products are manufactured using up to 80% recycled content, including glass collected from the local communities around its factories. The finished products are then compressed by up to 10:1 to fit more product into each lorry reducing transport related carbon emissions.Another innovation is ECOSE® Technology, its unique bio-based binder contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. It is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders, so it is more environmentally friendly.Products made with ECOSE® Technology are also soft to touch and easy to handle. They generate low levels of dust and VOCs and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort.Ongoing supportThe through-wall build-up was installed by Metclad Contracts. As this was the first time they had worked with Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab, they also turned to the Specification Team for installation advice. They wanted to know whether the insulation should be fixed into the sheathing boards or the SFS.Knauf Insulation provided details of the fixing pattern together with the installation guide. They also facilitated meetings with their fixing partner to provide specialist technical support about pull out values and requirements for fixing into the substrate.Thanks to Knauf Insulation’s extensive technical expertise and ongoing support, the vision for the University of Salford’s state-of-the-art SEE building has become a reality – without any compromise on thermal performance, fire safety, acoustic or sustainability.
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Agar Grove, London

Agar Grove, London

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Agar Grove is a multi-award-winning development, created by 5-star housebuilder, The Hill Group for Camden Council, as part of their Community Investment Programme. With a proposed 507 new homes, once complete Agar Grove will be the largest Passivhaus development in the UK.Knauf Insulation’s glass blowing mineral wool Supafil® has been specified for Phase 1C of the project, which comprises 125 homes. We spoke to Hill’s Senior Technical Coordinator, Ben Clarke and Senior Contract Surveyor, Matthew Bricknell about the needs of the project.Prioritising real performancePassivhaus is an internationally recognised building standard, resulting in very high energy efficiency. For the residents of Agar Grove, this will mean greater thermal comfort, alongside reduced energy bills.Achieving the Passivhaus standard requires a complex balance of design factors to create high levels of insulation and airtightness. To ensure their designs would deliver in the real world, it was therefore important for Hill to specify products which would perform as well in situ as they did on paper.As Ben explains, “We chose to use blown-in insulation because of its real-world thermal performance. Installing insulation boards can sometimes mean gaps are left between them, which leads to cold bridges in the build. But that can be more easily avoided with a blown-in product.”To provide further quality assurance, Hill has appointed contractors from Knauf Insulation’s network of Approved Supafil® Installers. Trained by Knauf Insulation’s own Regional Technical Managers, they have the necessary product knowledge and expertise to ensure a quality installation.Using Supafil® will also mean that less product is wasted on-site. When rigid insulation boards are cut to size, offcuts are often discarded because they are difficult to use elsewhere. By contrast, Supafil® has a zero-waste potential. When the cavity is full any excess product remains in the insulation blowing machine hopper, ready to be installed on the next plot, and when the job is complete Supafil®’s packaging can be recycled. Ben says: “As a responsible business, Hill is always looking for ways to reduce waste on our projects wherever we can, and this solution will help us to do that”.Evidencing qualityThe Passivhaus accreditation requires Hill to demonstrate the energy efficiency of Agar Grove, which will involve data collection throughout the build and thermal imaging of the finished product. As Matt explains, “We have a significant quality assurance requirement. We need to be able to show Camden Council that we have insulated the building as specified and that’s not always a simple task – particularly with blown-in solutions which by their nature, are hidden within the cavity.”To help meet this challenge, Hill’s Approved Supafil® Installers will use Knauf Insulation’s app-based site reporting system, KinetiK®. The app allows the installer to select their site and plot number on their mobile device, photograph the elevation, and then scan each pack of Supafil® as it’s installed.Matt continues, “KinetiK® will enable us to confirm that the insulation has gone in as specified. This is essential for our client, but it also gives us confidence too. If areas are missed during an install, there are time and cost implications, so having a tool like KinetiK® will provide us with added assurance that the cavity has been fully filled.” Agar Grove will be the latest in a number of Passivhaus projects which Knauf Insulation has supported. Read more about Preston Springs, North Yorkshire here and Denby Dale, one of the first certified Passivhaus homes in the UK, here.
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Chilterns Lifestyle Centre, Amersham

Chilterns Lifestyle Centre, Amersham

Knauf Insulation Ltd

The Chilterns Lifestyle Centre in Amersham will feature a range of leisure, sports and community facilities. As each of the activities taking place will require different indoor temperatures – warm or cool – to keep users comfortable, a high-performing insulation solution was essential.Thermal performance wasn’t the only factor in insulation choice for specialist façade contractor Teampol. At just 14m high, the Chilterns Lifestyle Centre doesn’t fall under current fire regulations banning combustible insulation. But non-combustibility was still a key consideration in installing 2,300m2 of Knauf Insulation’s OmniFit® Slab 35 and Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab.“The original specification was for a combustible phenolic insulation,” said Scott Millins, Quantity Surveyor at Teampol. “But there’s always that concern at the back of my mind of ‘what if the worst happened?’ so I will only use non-combustible insulation whatever the height of the building. Plus, there’s a very real possibility that regulations may change again, and I don’t want my projects to need costly remedial work further down the line.”“I approached several manufacturers for a non-combustible alternative. They weren’t able to do the calculations quickly and couldn’t meet the U-value required without increasing the depth of the rainscreen insulation from 80mm to 120mm, which would have impacted the whole design.”By this point, finding a solution was critical, otherwise the entire project would be delayed. Millins approached Knauf Insulation’s Specification Team for support and product advice stressing the need for a fast turnaround. Within 24 hours, the Technical Support Team had conducted 3D U-value calculations and a condensation analysis.They recommended 150mm OmniFit® Slab 35 for the steel frame stud with Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab for the façade. Crucially, this combination meant they were able to meet the U-value of 0.22 W/m2K and keep to the original 80mm insulation depth specified for the rainscreen.“Knauf Insulation were fast, responsive and helpful,” explained Scott. “From our initial conversations, it was clear they had the technical expertise, and this was backed up by an extremely quick turnaround for all the supporting calculations that I needed to move forward with the job.”Both OmniFit® Slab 35 and Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab offer exceptional levels of thermal performance. They are non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification so will not contribute to the development or spread of fire should it occur. Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is BBA certified for use at any height.OmniFit® Slab 35 and Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab also have excellent sound absorption characteristics which will help ensure that any sports and community activities taking place inside don’t disturb local residents.As well as Knauf Insulation’s technical advice and product performance, the consistency and quality of the two products have impressed Millins and the Teampol installation team.“Installation of both OmniFit® Slab 35 and Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab has gone extremely smoothly. They’re both quick and easy to fit and it helps that these Mineral Wool products from Knauf Insulation are nice and soft – our installation team love working with them,” added Millins.This softness is thanks to the ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation's unique bio-based binder which contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. Products made with ECOSE® Technology are also easy to handle, generate low levels of dust and VOCs and have been awarded the Eurofins Gold Certificate for Indoor Air Comfort.As well as being kind to installers, ECOSE® Technology is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders, so it is kinder to the environment too.Thanks to Knauf Insulation’s rapid response and technical support, Teampol was able to meet the thermal requirements for the Chilterns Lifestyle Centre project using non-combustible insulation – all while keeping to the tight build schedule.
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Sort Trae, South Yorkshire

Sort Trae, South Yorkshire

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Creating a Passivhaus home Balancing sustainability and style, Sort Trae is the culmination of a retired architect’s vision for a home and creative space that blends into a South Yorkshire hillside. HEM Architects helped the client to bring this dream to life, using Knauf Insulation’s glass mineral wool insulation to achieve the incredibly high Passivhaus standards for energy efficiency. Low carbon and high comfort The client envisioned a sustainable build using Passivhaus, a voluntary standard for designing and building properties with very low energy consumption, that offer high levels of comfort for their occupants. To achieve this, the levels of air tightness and thermal performance far exceed those mandated by building regulations. FrameTherm® Slab 32 was friction-fitted within the 140mm thick timber frame walls on the first floor, while DriTherm® Cavity Slab 32 was used to fill the stone-clad masonry cavity walls on the ground floor.  “We try to specify fully filled masonry cavity walls where possible, sometimes up to 200mm wide, to maximise the use of mineral wool insulation. It pays dividends for the client”, explained Liam Seaman, Architectural Technologist for HEM Architects. Thermal performance is critical to the Passivhaus approach. The FrameTherm® Slab 32 provided a calculated U-value of 0.137 W/m2K in combination with the black timber frame wall and cladding. For the masonry cavity wall on the ground floor, a fractionally higher U-value of 0.138 W/m2K was achieved using thermally broken wall ties and DriTherm® Cavity Slab 32. This has contributed to Sort Trae’s exceptional thermal efficiency. Because glass mineral wool is flexible and fibrous, slabs knit together and adapt to minor imperfections in the substrate. This tight fit contributed to an overall air change of 0.54 ach (air change per hour), comfortably below the Passivhaus standard of 0.6 ach, meaning the property is air-tight while still providing good ventilation. Sustainable practices Liam explained his reasons for choosing Knauf Insulation, “The alternative products are often oil-based and the application of these is outweighed by the environmental impact of their production and lifecycle.” Both FrameTherm® Slab 32 and DriTherm® Cavity Slab 32 are manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation’s unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. The binder is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders. Knauf Insulation’s glass mineral wool insulation contains up to 80% recycled content, mostly glass bottles and jars. It is also compressed so more product can fit per pack or pallet, and less packaging is used. This means there’s more product per truck, resulting in fewer vehicles on the road, and less packaging per m2 of insulation. Achieving the Passivhaus standard In collaboration with HEM Architects and other suppliers, the client has created a stunning home and an inspiring set-up for her loom-weaving workshop. “It is general practice for us to specify Knauf Insulation as standard because we find the product information available to be really clear and useful”, Liam added. Knauf Insulation’s practical, detailed product information made it HEM Architects’ first choice to achieve the Passivhaus standard for thermal performance. 
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Gulson Road, Coventry

Gulson Road, Coventry

Knauf Insulation Ltd

Gulson Road is a new state of the art student accommodation block in the heart of Coventry’s university district. With 462 rooms, shared study areas, a common room, gym and staff management suite all set over eight storeys, fire safety was of the utmost importance.With this in mind, the architect, Stride Treglown, specified that Rock Mineral Wool should be used to insulate the rainscreen façade to comply with building regulations, which ban the use of combustible materials on all buildings over 18m tall.Knauf Insulation’s Technical Support Team undertook 3D U-value calculations on behalf of main contractors Robertson Construction and recommended 150mm Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab to achieve a U-value of 0.18W/m2K.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab has a thermal conductivity of just 0.034W/mK. It is non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 Reaction to Fire Classification rating, so will not contribute to the development or spread of fire should it occur. It is BBA certified for use in high rise buildings and the broadest range of build-ups of any rainscreen solution on the market.As well as exceptional thermal performance and fire safety, Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab provides high levels of sound absorption.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is easy to install correctly. The slabs interlock and adapt to minor imperfections in the substrate eliminating air leakage, which can reduce thermal and acoustic performance. It is also robust and durable with a water repellent additive to preserve its integrity while exposed during construction.Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab is manufactured with ECOSE® Technology, Knauf Insulation’s unique bio-based binder that contains no added formaldehyde or phenol. It is made from natural raw materials that are rapidly renewable, and is 70% less energy-intensive to manufacture than traditional binders, so it is more environmentally-friendly.Products made with ECOSE® Technology generate low levels of dust and VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and have been awarded the Eurofins (Gold) certificate for Indoor Air Comfort.Thanks to the enhanced thermal and acoustic performance from Knauf Insulation’s Rocksilk® RainScreen Slab, students at Gulson Road will enjoy warm, quiet, safe and sustainable flats to study, socialise and sleep in.

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