Fraunhofer CSE exhibited and presented results of its latest building energy efficiency research at BAU 2017, the world’s leading trade fair for architecture, materials, and systems. The trade fair was held at Messe München in Munich, Germany, from January 16-21, 2017. Over 2,100 exhibitors from 45 countries presented their products, while over 250,000 visitors were in attendance. This bi-annual event allowed professionals and visitors to experience the future of building through innovative products and services.
Fraunhofer CSE’s Director of Building Enclosures and Materials, Dr. Jan Kośny, presented recent findings on the new phenolic building insulation foam co-developed by Fraunhofer CSE in his presentation, Development of a Bio-based, Inexpensive, Noncorrosive, and Nonflammable Phenolic Foam for Building Insulation. The presentation took place on January 17 at the B0 Forum on building materials of the future. Dr. Kośny has been developing this new bio-based phenolic foam with partners from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and Atlas Roofing Corporation with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy EERE Building Technologies Office (BTO). Phenolic foam displays the highest thermal resistance among plastic foams and does not require fire retardants (which have been found to produce toxic fumes and are also more expensive). However, phenolic foam that was widely employed in the 1980s also displayed poor mechanical characteristics and had a pH of ~2-2.5, which made the foam acidic and led to metal roofs corroding once the foam encountered water. The new bio-based phenolic foam developed by Fraunhofer CSE and partners is less acidic (boasting a pH value of ~4.5-5), non-corrosive, mechanically stronger, inexpensive and has high thermal resistance.
More information on Fraunhofer’s booth at BAU 2017:
More information on the development of a new bio-based phenolic foam: