The reduction of energy consumption in buildings is becoming a crucial challenge. The increasing energy production to meet buildings' demands is one of the most polluting human activities. That is why achieving sustainable and energy-efficient buildings is one of the challenges that we must face in the near future.
A proper insulation of the building's envelope avoids most of the energy losses. Among the most common insulation materials, polyurethane systems stand out as one of the most efficient solutions, as they provide a great thermal behaviour.
Polyurethane as a sustainable material
One of the reasons why many people don't regard polyurethane as a sustainable material is because of its origin and production, as it produces CO2 emissions. However, if we analyze its use as insulation material in depth, we realize it avoids many more emissions than it produces:
- To obtain 1 m2 of polyurethane, 14 kg of equivalent CO2 are produced.
- With 1 m2 of it, we are able to achieve a saving of emissions of 1.800 kg of equivalent CO2.
- That is, we avoid the generation of CO2 in 130 times.
If we understand sustainability as obtaining economic, social and environmental benefits, then polyurethane insulation systems are a sustainable energy efficiency solution.
The use of polyurethane systems to improve the energy efficiency of buildings
The ultimate goal of energy efficiency in buildings is to create passive buildings that do not consume energy or whose consumption is minimal. To achieve this, one of the determining factors is the insulation level. Continuous polyurethane systems are the most outstanding in this field, since this material has the lowest coefficient of thermal conductivity.
Polyurethane systems are the most efficient, sustainable insulation product with the lower thermal conductivity. With the same thickness, polyurethane has a much higher performance than other insulation materials.
It also provides a sealing effect thanks to its continuity, avoiding thus cracks that could lead to thermal bridges.
In addition to its good thermal behaviour due its low conductivity coefficient, polyurethane systems also achieve acoustic insulation and they are an effective solution for the waterproofing of façades with transpiration.
In short, they involve a constructive solution that brings economic, social and environmental benefits to the building and its surroundings.