BEST3 CONFERENCE – Abstract 005
Innovative High Performance Thermal Building Insulation Materials -Today's
State-of-the-Art and Beyond Tomorrow
ab* c d
Bjorn Petter Jelle , Arild Gustavsen , and Ruben Baetens
Today there is a rapidly increasing demand noticeable to improve the energy efficiency of
buildings as the energy use in the building sector accounts for a significant part of the lotal
global energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. Consequently, concepts like passive houses
and zero emission buildings are being introduced. The thermal insulation of buildings plays an
important role in order to meet the demands of an improved energy efficiency. Currently,
traditional insulation materials are being applied in ever increasing thicknesses in the building
envelopes. However, very thick building envelopes are not desirable due to several aspects.
e.g. considering space issues with respect to both economy, floor area, transport volumes,
architectural restrictions and other limitations, material usage and existing building techniques.
Hence, new insulation materials and solutions with low thermal conductivity values are being
developed to achieve the highest possible thermal insulation resistance.
This work summarizes briefly the state-of-the-art thermal insulation materials and solutions of
today. e.g. vacuum insulation panels (VIPs), gas-filled panels (GFPs) and aerogels, and then
continues to investigate the possible paths towards the innovative high performance thermal
insulation materials and solutions of beyond tomorrow. The future insulation materials of beyond
tomorrow include advanced insulation materials (AIMs) as vacuum insulation materials (VIMs),
gas insulation materials (GIMs), nano insulation materials (NIMs) and dynamic insulation
materials (DIMs). Fundamental theoretical studies aimed at developing an understanding of the
basics of thermal conductance in the AlMs at an elementary and atomic level are addressed.
The ultimate goal of these studies is to develop tailor-made novel high performance thermal
insulation materials and dynamic insulation materials, the latter one enabling to control and
regulate the thermal conductivity in the materials themselves. i.e. from highly insulating to highly
conducting. Requirements of the future high performance thermal insulation materials and
solutions are proposed. Furthermore, an extension is made towards load-bearing properties
with thermal improvement of concrete structures as an example. and ultimately introducing the
material NanoCon at a conceptual stage.
Keywords: Vacuum Insulation Panel. VIP. Gas-Filled Panels, GFP, Aerogel, Phase Change Material, PCM,
Advanced Insulation Material, AIM, Vacuum Insulation Material, VIM, NanoCon.
Abstract mainly based on B.P. Jelle, A. Gustavsen, and R. Baetens, “The Pat to High Performance Thermal building
Insulation and Solutions of Tomorrow,” Journal of Building Physics, 34. 99-123, 2010.
a Department of Materials and Structures. SINTEF Building and Infrastructure. NO·7465 Trondheim. Norway. Department of Civil
and Transport Engineering. Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). NO-7491 Trondheim. Norway .
b Department of Architectural Design. History and Technology. Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). NO·7491
c Department of Civil Engineering. Catholic University 01 Leuven (KUL). B·3001 Heverlee, Belgium
*Corresponding author. Phone +47 73 593377. Fax +47 73 593380. bjorn.petter.jelle@Sintef.no