Leading manufacturer of structural insulated panels, Unilin Systems, has supplied the University of Ghent with factory-built thermally efficient sandwich panels for its E-cube project; a step towards affordable DIY housing that is solar-powered.
Ghent University’s unique two-storey home was designed as part of the U.S Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon 2011. The competition challenges 20 of the world’s universities to design, build and operate solar powered houses that are cost-effective, energy-efficient and attractive. The winner of the competition is the team that best blends affordability, consumer appeal, and design excellence with optimal energy production and maximum efficiency.
Specified for the whole building envelope, the wall and roof panels comprised boards with a total thickness of 204mm – 180mm PIR (polyurethane foam) and 12mm plywood. For the floors of the E-cube, which demand additional support thicker plywoodboards of 18mm were used within the same 204mm thickness of panel. The panels are highly thermal efficient and were one of the few SIPs systems that meant the University could design the E-cube house to the Passive House standard. Furthermore, the factory built panels can also be fitted without specialist knowledge, helping the E-cube to uphold its DIY construction methodology.
The theory of the E-cube project fits well with Unilin Systems approach to providing innovative solutions to modern construction and social problems that can work towards a better future. Therefore, the manufacturer’s involvement in the project was a natural one:
“E-cube presents a potential solution to the problems that we face today and that we will almost certainly have to address in the future,” explains Kris Bulckaen, sales director, Unilin Systems. “The DIY methodology of the house is a big step in our systems approach to construction and proves that with factory engineered solutions such as our SIPs panels it is possible to build thermally efficient housing quickly, simply and at a low cost.”
Unilin Systems has been furthering the advancement of SIPs for 30 years and invests heavily in continuous research and development to ensure that it offers the best possible performance from its range of roof and wall panel solutions. Manufactured to tolerances that reduce waste on-site, the panels are built on a highly automated production system that helps to minimise energy and material consumption.Unilin Systems offer a range of insulation materials for its SIPs panels, including mineral wool and timber fibres, as well as a range of interior finishes.
Unilin Systems have a dedicated UK support team on hand to help with further information and any enquiries.
Contact Unilin Systems on 0032 (0)56 73 50 91