Insulation in Cold Room Panels

Insulation in Cold Room Panels


Cold rooms are places of storage where perishable items such as food, drinks, pharmaceuticals, and raw materials are kept. Cold rooms include insulated panels to keep the interior of the building at a consistent temperature and stop air leakage. Insulated panels are used in cold rooms along with spray foam insulation (made of polyurethane)and rigid foam insulation boards (made of polystyrene and polyisocyanurate).

Two Common Types of Insulation

  • Expanded Polystyrene Insulation
  • Polyurethane Insulation

Benefits

  • Panels made of Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) are lightweight, simple to install, and offer effective insulation. They are also mold and moisture-resistant.
  • Panels with Polyurethane insulation are a popular choice for cold storage applications due to their superior insulating qualities. Mold and moisture are not able to grow on them.

The Difference between Polystyrene & Polyurethane

Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) insulated panels and Polyurethane insulated panels differ in that the former has a lower moisture absorption rate, a greater R-value, and superior fire safety.
Due to its hygroscopic nature, EPS can eventually promote the growth of fungus, mold, and bacteria by retaining water. On the other hand, Polyurethane foam offers long-lasting protection and good waterproofing qualities.
Additionally, compared to EPS foam, Polyurethane foam is simpler to install, reducing thermal bridging and guaranteeing adequate building insulation.

Impact of Thickness

The thickness of the insulated panels is determined by several criteria, including foot traffic, external heat exposure, how cold you plan to keep the area, and the weight of the items that you need to store. The thickness can vary between 5 and 30 cm. Technical requirements for the construction of a cold storage room state that insulation thicknesses of at least 80 mm should be used for the external and interior walls, 80 mm for the ceiling, and 50 mm for the floor.
The temperature range, humidity level, and space dimensions are some of the variables that affect the thickness of the insulated panels used in cold rooms. The amount of airtightness and thermal insulation needed to keep the cold room at the proper temperature depends on how thick the panels are.

Calculations

The insulation thickness formula is determined by the geometry and temperature gradient of the system. The formula for flat geometry of finite thickness is

Q: Heat Flow (W)
k: Thermal Conductivity (W/mK)
A: Area (m²)
(T1-T2): Temperature Difference
L: Insulation Thickness (m)

Author: Marné Bierman, Marketing Controller & Administration Assistant
Editor: Morné Hattingh, National Sales Manager: Compressorised Product & HeatExchangers

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