SIPs or Structural Insulated Panels are a 21st century composite material that provides the benefits of insulation and structural performance in a single building product. We used R-Control SIPs which consist of Foam-Control® EPS (expanded polystyrene) insulation laminated with structural adhesives to oriented strand board (OSB) structural sheathing. R-Control SIP panels benefit from the unique characteristics of composites – the simple sandwich panel forms an amazingly strong insulated panel for building walls, roofs and floors.
We used SIPS for the walls only. In addition, we “hung” the second floor within the structure to significantly reduce energy loss and increase strength.
Benefits of using Structural Insulated Panels (SIPS)?
There are numerous reasons why Structural Insulated Panels are rapidly becoming a preferred method of construction for those educated in building science:
- Comfort: Homes built with SIPs have an interior environment that blocks wind and moisture, is very quiet, clean, and that contributes to superior comfort.
- Construction Speed: SIPs are a faster method of construction because they reduce framing time by as much as 50% percent compared to conventional stick frame methods. This one fact significantly reduces your labor costs associated with framing.
- Energy Efficiency: Structural insulated panels are one of the most airtight and well insulated building systems available reducing air infiltration and energy consumption.
- Green Building: SIPs reduce their impact on the environment by using component materials that are earth friendly and helps create a green building that uses less energy.
- Strength: SIPs are a strong method of construction and can outperform conventional methods in both structural testing and real world high winds and earthquakes.
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Contributing to this green badge is the use of fewer joints in SIPs, which means a tighter building assembly. In fact, a study by the largest US Department of Energy, Science and Energy laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratories (ORNL), found that a SIP-constructed home was considerably more airtight than a wood-framed and fiberglass-insulated room when subjected to identical climate conditions and a blower door test.
More info: http://www.architectureanddesign.com.au/features/product-in-focus/structural-insulated-panels-the-evolution-of-the-2