Polyurethane systems are one of the most used insulating materials in construction, not only due to their good thermal behaviour, but also because of their acoustic properties. The insulation barrier formed by polyurethane is able to control the sound waves that are annoying, both those external noises surrounding the building (such as street or aircraft noise) or internal noises (objects falling on the ground, neighbours, furniture…).
Noise control is very important for a building's inhabitants, since it can seriously affect their health, to the point that it is one of the four environmental factors with the greatest impact on health, and it causes at least 10,000 cases of premature deaths per year in the European Union.
Characteristics of the thermoacoustic insulation of polyurethane
Polyurethane systems are characterized by low thermal conductivity (0.035-0.040 W / m K) which allows optimum thermal insulation of the housing and which combines high sealing capacity and ease of application due to its lightness (10- 12 kg/m3).
On the other hand, this high sealing capacity provides very good results in acoustic insulation in areas of high noise levels, such as discotheques, coffee shops, factories or areas with air traffic.
In addition, the thermoacoustic properties of this insulation material remain intact throughout the life of the building. Its behaviour against fire complies with current regulations, being a very safe material due to the absence of dripping and carbonization from the outside, leaving the interior of the core protected.
Applications to reach optimum thermoacoustic insulation
In order to achieve maximum interior comfort in a building it is necessary to have the openings of the envelope and the ambient sound waves that surround the building under control. We must not forget the internal elements of partitioning, such as partitions and floors, as well as possible cracks and fissures that can cause air to enter.
An optimal solution is the use of polyurethane systems by projection on surfaces such as floors and slabs. In other constructive elements such as facades, it is possible to achieve high levels of thermoacoustic insulation by injecting the polyurethane into the existing air gap of the wall.
On the other hand, polyurethane foam is anincreasingly used resource in the sealing of doors, windows and sewage, as well as in walls as,even under extreme climatic situations, it maintains its technical properties.
However, if we want to achieve a good thermal insulation, closed cell foams are the most suitable but, on the contrary, if our objective is acoustic insulation, low density foam and open cell is the most optimal solution. In most cases where the objective is to get an insulating solution with both a good thermal and acoustic behaviour, a combination of both types can be used.