January 17, 2011

Energy saving wonder: the new Ytong insulating block with a lambda value of 0.07 W/(mK)

Xella is continuing to expand its role as world leader in the field of energy saving construction. The company has become the first manufacturer to further improve upon the insulating properties of aerated autoclaved concrete. With a lambda value of 0.07 W/(mK) the new Ytong block achieves a thermal insulation value that allows both energy saving and passive houses to be constructed with a single-wall construction and without additional thermal insulation. Even better, the new Ytong block already complies with the regulations that will come into effect from 2020.
From 2020, more stringent energy requirements will apply to buildings in EU countries. New constructions will then have to exhibit extremely high energy efficiency and a large proportion of their energy will have to come from renewable sources. From the end of 2020 it is intended that all newly constructed buildings will have a primary energy requirement that is practically zero. "Someone looking for a wall construction material today would be well advised to take into consideration the regulations that will apply in future. Owners that build with our materials can be certain that they will not need to modernise in 10 years time", comments Markus Blum, Managing Director of Sales at Xella Deutschland, on the introduction of the new high-tech construction material.
With these new EU regulations in mind, it is already necessary to market the right construction materials today. With its lambda value of 0.07 W/(mK), the new insulating block from Ytong has one of the best insulation values of any solid construction material. Even with a wall thickness of just 36.5 cm it is possible to build single-wall constructions that comply with the KfW Efficiency House 55 energy standard. At this wall thickness, the current EnEV (Contribution of the Energy Saving Regulation) reference requirements are even bettered by 35 %. Additional insulation of the external walls isn't necessary under these conditions. Building with the solid Ytong insulating blocks today therefore already takes into consideration the expected requirements of the Contribution of the Energy Saving Regulation and even the forthcoming EU-wide regulations for new constructions. High energy efficiency and cost-effective construction of building shells, together with the long-term and future-oriented maintenance of a property's intrinsic value are the most important aspects of sustainable construction at Xella Germany. This means that not only the value of a property is secured over the long-term, but the health of its occupants is also promoted thanks to the natural construction materials and pleasant living environment.
Thermal advantages of the homogenous pore structure.
Thanks to the homogenous pore structure, Ytong aerated autoclaved concrete possesses the same thermal characteristics in all planes. It is therefore possible to design and construct buildings that exhibit minimal thermal bridging. This not only ensures minimal heat loss, it also creates a healthy living environment because minimising thermal bridges avoids the build up of dampness in these areas – and the associated risk of mould formation. Staying with the Ytong construction system, for instance by using Ytong products for the roof, corner stones and reveal blocks and by selecting solid aerated autoclaved concrete products, creates the best conditions for the secure installation of connections and clean construction details, and owners will not have to worry about material-dependant thermal bridges. Air and wind-resistant building shells can be simply and permanently constructed; maintenance-intensive building joints do not arise as with other construction materials.
With the Ytong PP 1.6-0.25 block, Xella proves that the innovation potential of aerated autoclaved concrete is still far from exhausted. Furthermore, the research program is being rigorously pursued with the objective of further improving the insulation of buildings by utilising aerated concrete. This will also make an important contribution to environmental protection.
The requirements of the German Contribution of the Energy Saving Regulation in respect of residential buildings tend to be in the midfield; the requirements in Sweden, Denmark, The Netherlands and Luxembourg are in part, considerably more stringent. In order to meet the tighter requirements in Denmark, Xella is introducing a new type of Ytong block to the market there. This has a wall thickness of 41.5 cm and an equivalent lambda value of 0.06 W/(mK). Presented for the first time at the Bau 2011 exhibition, the German launch of this product will follow at a later date. "With our new Ytong 0.07 block and the innovative 0.06 block generation we are demonstrating our ability to innovate", says Markus Blum at the presentation of both new products at Bau 2011.
The new insulating blocks are the result of intensive fundamental research that Xella has carried out at its own technology and research centre. With a compressive strength of    1.6 MN/m2 and bulk density class of 0.25 the thermal conductivity of the new Ytong block has been improved to λ = 0.07 W/(mK). Without additional – and highly energy-intensive to manufacture – insulating components, the insulation values for exterior walls required by the current German Contribution of the Energy Saving Regulation are easily achieved even with a wall thickness of 24 cm. The innovative Ytong PP 1.6-0.25 with its lambda value of 0.07 W/(mK) has one of the best insulation values of any solid construction material and it offers a high load-bearing capacity at the same time.
The Ytong PP 1.6-0.25 block will be available from spring 2011.
Editorial contact:
Olaf Kruse
Ytong Silka – Marketing/PR
Tel.: 0203 9330 - 436
E-mail: olaf.kruse@xella.com