03/26/2003

Air Barriers and Energy

Massachusetts Adopts Continuous Air Barrier Requirements

 

A Total Building Envelope Solution

The BASF WALLTITE™ Insulating Air Barrier System is now available in a formulation specifically engineered for the United States. The system – consisting of sprayed polyurethane foam (SPF) in combination with appropriate primers, transition membranes, other sealants, and an optional vapor barrier – delivers a unique combination of properties to a highly functional “building envelope.”

When designed and installed as part of the BASF engineered building envelope system, the WALLTITE air barrier contributes to improved building durability; energy efficiency; and to occupant comfort, health, and safety. The system has been specified on several new construction projects in Massachusetts since the introduction of the state’s new Commercial Energy Code.

Massachusetts is leading the way to more efficient buildings with the inclusion of continuous air barrier systems in its new Commercial Energy Code, a trend that is expected to spread throughout the Northeastern United States in the near future.

The state is the first jurisdiction to mandate air barrier systems in non-residential construction. The new Commercial Energy Code conforms to the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) program goals to reduce building energy consumption by 25 percent by the year 2010, and 50 percent by 2020. Air barrier systems will play an important role in meeting the DOE goals. The code is the culmination of nearly three years of work.

Air barrier requirements appear in section 1304.3 Air Leakage of 780 CMR, Chapter 13. “1304.3.1 Air Barriers: The building envelope shall be designed and constructed with a continuous air barrier to control air leakage into, or out of, the conditioned space.” The code stipulates the following characteristics for the air barrier:

  • Continuous, with all joints made air-tight.
  • Air permeability of less than 0.004 cfm/ft2 under a pressure differential of 0.3 in. water (1.57 psf).
  • Capable of withstanding positive and negative combined design wind, fan, and stack pressures on the envelope without damage or displacement.
  • Will not transfer wind load to the structure.
  • Durable and maintainable.
  • Joined in air-tight and flexible manner to the air barrier material of adjacent systems, allowing for relative movement of systems.
  • Connection to be made between: foundations and walls; walls and windows or doors; different wall systems; wall and roof; wall and roof over unconditioned space; walls, floor, and roof across construction, control, and expansion joints; and walls, floors, and roof to utility, pipe, and duct penetrations.

One of the materials that meets – and in some cases exceeds – these requirements is Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF). Many people are familiar with SPF roofing systems, but they don’t know that SPF is a two-component product that is manufactured on-site but engineered on the molecular level to optimize performance for a specific application.

SPF has a closed cell rigid formulation that creates an effective air barrier, as well as providing the highest level of thermal insulation. Usually, additional vapor barrier protection is not necessary.

SPF air barriers offer peak wind load resistance; seamless, monolithic construction; and almost zero air permeability. SPF conforms to unusual shapes and is rigid, self-supporting, and fully self-adhering. Installation is performed in a single operation for lower labor costs and does not require fasteners, gluing, or torches.

Buildings professionals have successfully used SPF air barriers for more than 10 years on all types of industrial, commercial, and industrial buildings, both low- and high-rise. Typical applications include cavity walls, pre-cast concrete walls, curtainwall, and IPS walls.

Currently the product manager for BASF’s Spray Foam Group (www.basf.com/spray), Wyandotte, MI, Tom Harris has worked for 20 years in the polyurethane systems business. He represents BASF as a founding member of the Air Barrier Association of America.

 


Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.

 

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Tennant Company is a recognized leader in designing, manufacturing and marketing solutions that help create a cleaner, safer, healthier world. With thousands of satisfied customers already using award winning ec-H2O technology, why not see what you're missing? Test ec-H2O on your soils in your facility. Get a free demo.


Tennant Company is a recognized leader in designing, manufacturing and marketing solutions that help create a cleaner, safer, healthier world. With thousands of satisfied customers already using award winning ec-H2O technology, why not see what you're missing? Test ec-H2O on your soils in your facility. Get a free demo.

 

Replace core drilling with Connectrac In-Carpet and On-Floor Wireways, the proven connectivity solution in open interior spaces of all kinds. These elegant low-profile wireways are great for AV / telecom connectivity wherever it’s needed.

 


Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.

 

Add highly responsive multi-zone comfort to any building project, in any climate. Our CITY MULTI H2i R2- and Y-Series VRF systems give you flexibility to fit the needs of any building. Enjoy 100% heating capacity at 0°F outdoor ambient, and 85% heating capacity at -13°F outdoor ambient.  For more information, log on to www.mitsubishipro.com


Tennant Company is a recognized leader in designing, manufacturing and marketing solutions that help create a cleaner, safer, healthier world. With thousands of satisfied customers already using award winning ec-H2O technology, why not see what you're missing? Test ec-H2O on your soils in your facility. Get a free demo.


Tennant Company is a recognized leader in designing, manufacturing and marketing solutions that help create a cleaner, safer, healthier world. With thousands of satisfied customers already using award winning ec-H2O technology, why not see what you're missing? Test ec-H2O on your soils in your facility. Get a free demo.

 

Replace core drilling with Connectrac In-Carpet and On-Floor Wireways, the proven connectivity solution in open interior spaces of all kinds. These elegant low-profile wireways are great for AV / telecom connectivity wherever it’s needed.

 


 
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