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How good is the insulation quality of IR reflective insulation products?

: Kersken, M.; Schade, A.

Fulltext (PDF; )

Zmeskal, O. ; Brno University of Technology (Veranst., Hrsg.):
Thermophysics 2010. Proceedings : 3rd to 5th November 2010, Valtice, Czech Republic, Brno University of Technology
Brno: Brno University of Technology, 2010
ISBN: 978-80-214-4166-8
Conference "Thermophysics" <12, 2010, Valtice>
Conference Paper, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IBP ()

Some manufacturers of IR reflective insulation products claim, that their products feature a high insulation quality that can not be described by traditional methods of building physics. Field experiences indicate a different behaviour. How good are IR reflective insulations really? On the outdoor testing facilities of the Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics in Holzkirchen near Munich are two identical buildings in family house size. In one attic a mineral wool roof system is installed, in the other an IR reflective insulation roof system. Both houses possess extensive measurement equipment in the attics for monitoring all important temperatures and heat flows. The comparative measurements of the attics are done parallel during several winter and summer measurement periods.
Traditional laboratory measurements are done in the Fraunhofer Institute for building physics at Stuttgart. The results of the inSitu and the laboratory measurement are compared. Further the examinations are completed by dynamic calculations. Therefore the simulation model is validated by the measurement data itself. In all measurements and simulations the examined roof system with IR reflective insulation shows typical characteristics of insulations with lower thermal resistance. The values of the traditional measurements match with the results of the in situ measurements.
Conclusion of the measurements and simulations carried out are that the IR reflective products can be described by the means of the traditional building physics.