InsulStar SPF chosen by top Solar Decathlon winner

The top finisher in the 2010 European Solar Decathlon, Virginia Tech, and second place winner in the U.S. Solar Decathlon, University of Illinois Urban-Champaign have once again chosen InsulStar SPF insulation by NCFI for their 2011 project. The insulation is widely acknowledged by sustainable building experts for its superior R-Value (measurement of thermal resistance), and its closed-cell structure that provides a superior air and moisture barrier, keeping out pollens, molds, spores, and dust.

Mark Taylor, UIUC’s managing architectural co-principle investigator for the 2011 Solar Decathlon competition, says, “One of our key design tenets is an air-tight envelope. We do that by super-insulating the walls and InsulStar SPF insulation makes that possible. That allows us to greatly downsize the mechanical system.”


This year’s UIUC entry, the Re_home, is a green, rapidly-deployed home for disaster victims. “The design this year has a very contemporary aesthetic,” says Taylor. “It’s a flexible, adaptable building that can be transported easily along the U.S. road network, with a plug-and-play PV (photovoltaic) array and a new Conditioning Energy Recovery Ventilator fresh air conditioning system developed by Newell Instruments.”

UI has chosen Homeway Homes, Peoria, Ill., as their building partner again this year. Ted Schieler, president of Homeway Homes says, “We’ve been working with UIUC for a few years now and we’re really excited about this year’s entry. Our knowledge of building and construction and their forward-thinking design is a proven winning partnership.”

Taylor agrees. “In the past we’ve gone to them with our designs and ideas and they built the home. This time we’ve studied their cutting edge fabrication and manufacturing processes to create a home we think has solid, real-world applications for any consumer who wants a super-insulatated, highly efficient home.”

The Solar Decathlon is sponsored by U.S. Department of Energy, and is a biannual competition that challenges 20 universities from around the world to design and build solar powered homes. In September, each school will transport their home to the Washington, D.C. where they will be judged for performance in ten categories: architecture, market appeal, engineering, communications, affordability, comfort zone, hot water, appliances, home entertainment, and energy balance.

Mitch Clifton, manager with NCFI who make InsulStar SPF insulation, says, “We’re pulling for all the schools that choose InsulStar for energy conservation and comfort. The UIUC team and their partner, Homeway Homes, were the top U.S. finisher in 2009 with InsulStar, and Virginia Tech won with it in Europe. Most entries include it because it’s the ideal product to make zero energy and ultimate comfort possible.” Clifton concludes. “It’s proof-positive the future of healthier, better performing buildings requires the very best, highest quality SPF insulation.”

Related article: Solar Decathlon dates set

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