Advantages and use of a newly developed load-bearing insulation material made of cattail
Using the special structural properties of cattail (Typha), a magnesite-bound Typha board has been developed offering a combination of insulation and strength, which is unique on the market. This product contains only plant ingredients and a purely mineral-based adhesive but no further additives. The cultivation of Typha already brings great environmental benefits and at the same time is extremely lucrative for farmers. The first practical application of this material has been within the restoration of an old half-timber-framed building. With the Typha board, as infill of the timber frames and as an additional inside insulation layer, an extremely slender exterior wall construction with wall heating was realized. The magnesite-bound Typha board is also applied successfully for interior insulation of masonry, where due to its hygric properties, and the resulting fault tolerance, the use of a vapor barrier could be avoided. In the research project “Interior Insulation” the Typha board could be compared to a wide selection of systems, such as mineral capillary-active insulation materials, innovative, highly insulating and yet thin systems (using aerogel) as well as materials made from renewable raw materials. Beside board insulation, insulating plasters and dry construction systems have been investigated. Appropriate monitoring was carried out for all systems, on the one hand to prove their functionality under practical building conditions, and on the other hand to use the measurement results for a comparative evaluation. This evaluation takes into account monument preservation, energy, moisture, construction, economic and ecological aspects and demonstrates the special properties of the Typha-board, particularly with regard to sustainability and moisture protection.