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Super Therm® vs Batt Insulation

Environmentally better and outstanding results

October, 2001

Energy Star ratingQuestions on Insulation comparisons

  • What is Blanket or Batt type insulation and how does it compare?
  • What is the performance difference between Batt type insulation and Super Therm®?
  • How is using BTU meter guns more effective in finding "R" rating than comparing W/mK or other standard heat transmission figures normally used for Batt installations?

Blanket Type Insulation - this is Fibreglass or rock wool

For blanket type insulation the insulation or thermal conductivity is based on a minimum of 75mm (3 inches) up to 150mm (6 inches) thickness. To try and use the same W/mK is not correct because of the large differences in thickness required.

From now on, the main point of insulation is based purely on BTU conduction of heat or Heat Flow. This is the measurement used by the energy companies to judge if a material is stopping heat conduction. Heat Flow is the main characteristic that they are concerned with. The comparison of W/Mk is not important between Batt insulation materials and coatings, the most important factor is--does the material stop Heat Flow which is blocking BTU heat flow and how effective is it in blocking the BTU heat flow.

Super Therm® is much better than the Batt type insulation materials in blocking BTU Heat Flow.
For example: Using our Heat Flow BTU engineering guns, we measured a roof with fiberglass inside of the roof and another roof coated with Super Therm®.

Two different readings are made with the BTU gun

1. BTU reading is taken on the interior wall to find the ambient heat load inside the building. Then a reading is taken on the roof interior surface to find the amount of BTU heat flow coming through the roof. You subtract the ambient BTU load from the BTU Heat Flow coming through the interior of the roof to find the BTU Heat Flow per sq. ft. per hour.

2. BTU surface heat measurement on the surface of the exterior of the roof and the interior of the roof to show the difference in the surface measurement of BTU heat on the surface to find the amount of BTU heat transmission from exterior to interior side of the roof.

a. The fiberglass roof showed BTU conduction of 4.8 BTU per sq. ft. per hour.
The top of their roof was 202°F (94.4°C) and interior side was 155°F (68.3°C), which is a blockage of 47 BTU units of heat transmissions.

b. The Super Therm® roof showed BTU conduction of 4.3 BTU per sq. ft per hour.
The top of our roof was 202°F (94.4°C) (because the heat is being thrown back to the atmosphere and records hotter above the coating surface than is the metal roof) and the interior side was 142°F (61.1°C), which is a blockage of 60 units of heat transmission.

Therefore: In BTU blockage of Heat Flow Blockage of Heat unit transmission:

  • Super Therm® 4.3/sq. ft. per hour 202 - 142 = 60 BTU transmission
  • Fiberglass (Low E) 4.8 sq. ft. per hour 202 - 155 = 47 BTU transmission
  • Performance Comparison 12% better (Low E) vs. 28% better (Super Therm®)

Which do you want?
Super Therm® outperformed the Batt Type Insulation

This BTU testing was performed on a Major Distribution center in Texas.

The readings on the Super Therm® when plotted on the Omega R value chart give an R 18 rating. Low E plotted to an R 11. BTU readings are the backbone of insulation measurements. Reflectivity, emmissivity and visual light bounce cannot relate to heat transfer and BTU Heat Flow. Measurement standards and calculations used to evaluate Batt type insulation material cannot be used with ceramic insulation coatings because the Batt is calculated to absorb heat and ceramics repel heat.

Batt or Blanket type insulation is designed to absorb and load with heat during the day. The reason that this type of insulation material must be so thick is because as the day progresses, the heat absorbs into the material, the thickness must be thick enough to absorb and hold the heat before the heat is able to penetrate totally through the material and come to the inside of the building.

As heat builds up during the day, the heat absorbs into the Batt and migrates through and comes into the building in the afternoon. When this happens, the heat that has been absorbed into the Batt is hotter than the heat inside the building. The trapped heat inside the building cannot get out of the building because it cannot migrate through the Batt until late at night when the Batt material cools down and then the trapped heat inside the building can migrate back through the Batt to be released back into the atmosphere late into the night.

The Batt is inefficient because any moisture or humidity as little as 2% of humidity can reduce the insulation ability of the Batt by 35%. If a Batt is rated to be a RE-19 and 2% of moisture enters the Batt, which is normal within the first month of installation, the efficiency is reduced to R 12. The more humidity that is absorbed the more the efficiency is reduced.

The Super Therm® is never affected by moisture or humidity after it is applied and cured. Super Therm® does not absorb heat. It is not designed to absorb heat and therefore this is why we do not need thickness. You only need thickness if the material is designed to absorb heat. Since the ceramics repels heat from the surface of the coating, no heat is ever absorbed and it limits the migration of any heat through the coating. When the sun goes down in the afternoon, the building can quickly cool down because no heat has been absorbed and is being held in the building as in the case of the fiberglass which does absorb and holds heat. This quick cooling allows the Air conditioning units to shut down faster and save energy on a daily basis.