Tech which makes Sense

steel sips

What is? –

Steel SIPs, or Steel Structural Insulated Panels, are structural frame panels, approximately 4″ wide, made of densely packed expanded polystyrene, commonly known as EPS, sandwiched between two outer sheets of galvanized steel. These panels provide structural frame, insulation, and exterior cladding all in one piece Panels, in theory, are similar to OSB SIPs, which is better known than steel SIP panels OSB, or oriented strand board, is simply replaced with steel sheets to create the steel SIPs.

Applications –

Steel SIP construction can be used for most residential applications. Steel SIPs are recommended for commercial buildings such as office complexes and applications less than two or three stories.

Advantages –

* Steel SIPs are two to three times stronger than conventional brick and bar construction. This allows for greater design flexibility and open floor plans.

* Steel SIP panels offer high R-values. Compared to a conventionally built house, a steel SIP wall system is at least 25 percent more efficient. This saves the owner or occupant on heating and cooling costs.

* Steel SIPs allow for an airtight envelope that will last over time. Steel, unlike wood, will never settle, compress, warp, rot, warp, etc., which means you don’t have to worry about creating gaps. Gaps mean air penetration, which means higher costs to heat and cool the house or building.

* Since steel SIPs do not settle or warp, you no longer have to deal with cracked walls and ceilings. Also, the walls will be level and square.

* Without air penetration, allergens and dust do not constantly enter the house or building. Reducing indoor allergens and dust creates a healthy indoor environment, where we typically spend 80% of our time.

* Steel SIPs do not emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs). They do not “off-gas” potentially harmful chemicals (such as formaldehyde) and carcinogens in the home or building. OSB and wooden sticks cannot offer such benefits.

* With cleaner air (especially with our air purifiers) and a well-insulated structure due to steel panels, the house or building has comfortable indoor conditions.

* Steel SIPs have received the highest seismic rating possible in the State of California. They are also resistant to hurricane force winds. They are rated to withstand wind loads up to 155 miles per hour.

* Steel SIPs are not vulnerable to termites. Compare this to SIP OSB which, unless the wood is treated, is food for pests. Steel panels also discourage the growth of mold and mildew.

* Steel SIPs are built at the manufacturing plant. Since they are manufactured in a controlled environment, the quality is considerably higher.

* Steel panels not only keep outside air out, but also keep outside sounds out. Steel SIPs offer superior acoustic sound insulation.

* Steel is recyclable and made from at least 28 percent recycled materials. Also, there is very little construction waste. These factors make a steel house or building have a smaller environmental footprint.

* Steel SIPs are fire resistant. In tests, the steel SIPs produced no smoke and did not allow fire to spread. Compare this to houses and buildings built with sticks or OSB SIP which burn easily and actually add fuel to the fire.

Disadvantages –

Steel SIPs require a break in insulation between the exterior of the panel and the exterior covering of the house or building. This is unlike ICF, which has the form built in, or OSB SIP, for example. Compared to their advantages, steel SIP systems probably have the fewest drawbacks of any framing method.

Misconceptions –

Steel SIPs and steel structures are thought by some to be dangerous during thunderstorms. This is not only wrong but actually wrong. Steel houses and buildings are actually safer than conventionally built structures because the steel acts as a continuous floor.

What makes it “green”?

* High levels of insulation and an extremely airtight envelope mean cooling and heating costs are reduced by 50-60 per cent. This means less energy is extracted from coal plants across the country, which equates to fewer greenhouse gas emissions.

* The air inside the house, with our added measures, will be cleaner than the air outside the house, making a house or building healthy and free of allergens.

* Steel is made from at least 28 percent recycled steel. It is also recyclable.

* The EPS (panel interior) only uses a small amount of oil to produce. The material saves more energy than is required to produce it.

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