Thermal insulation

The term thermal insulation can refer to materials used to reduce the rate of heat transfer, or the methods and processes used to reduce heat transfer.

Heat is transferred from one material to another by conduction, convection and/or radiation. Insulators are used to minimize the transfer of heat energy. In home insulation, the R-value is an indication of how well a material insulates. The major types of insulation are associated with the major types of heat transfer:

  • Reflectors are used to reduce radiative heat transfer.
  • Foams, fibrous materials or spaces are used to reduce conductive heat transfer by reducing physical contact between objects
  • Foams, fibrous materials or evacuated spaces are used to reduce convective heat transfer by stopping or retarding the movement of fluids (liquids or gases) around the insulated object.

Combinations of some of these methods are often used, for example the combination of reflective surfaces and vacuum in a vacuum flask.

Understanding heat transfer is important when planning how to insulate an object or a person from heat or cold, for example with correct choice of insulated clothing, or laying insulating materials beneath in-floor heat cables or pipes in order to direct as much heat as possible upwards into the floor surface and reduce heat loss to the ground underneath.

Latest Thermal insulation news

Eigg Offers Itslelf As A Blueprint For UK Renewables
The Scottish west coast island of Eigg has managed to halve carbon emissions from the average household by generating more than 90 per cent of electricity from renewables. The 95 residents also save energy by heating water with solar panels and carefully rationing electricity. The tiny island in the Inner Hebrides won the U...
Hebridean Energy Future Conference Highlights "The Western Isles Offer"
Comhairle nan Eilean Siar is calling on OFGEM to support an immediate 900MW electricity grid connection to the Western Isles. The call was made at the Energy Futures Conference in Stornoway today where the Leader of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, ...
Renewable Heating Technology
Renewable heating systems make sure of naturally occurring energy sources such a geothermal enegy and solar energy. These renewable heating systems absorb and convert this naturally occurring energy to provide us with heat and hot water for our homes...
Irish Achieve 2010 Renewable Target
 Eamon Ryan, Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, today welcomed the Renewable Energy in Ireland report by SEAI. “The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland report shows that last year Ireland generated 14.5% of...
Highland Housing Fair Rebranded for 2010
A homes exhibition that has asked for up to £100,000 from Highland Council will be a "stunning success", a councillor has said. Drew Hendry told the planning, environment and development committee that the event would be a success. ...
Eco-Town Proposal Submitted
Proposals have been submitted for a so called 'eco-town' in Gloucestershire which would see the creation of 2,000 new homes. Developers Hunter Page Planning submitted the proposal to Stroud District Council and parish councils. Th...

Featured Thermal insulation company

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