Espoo, Finland -- Rising energy expenses and tougher environmental demands create additional challenges for makers of insulation and construction products, says Walki Group, which makes laminates for insulation and construction industries.
Espoo-headquartered Walki has a new production line in Valkeakoski, Finland, for these laminates, used for example to face rigid polyurethane foam for building insulation panels. And the company says this line complies with environmentally sound principles and can help customers meet current challenges, by offering increasingly better solutions.
"What is required is a diffusion-tight laminate that improves the insulation properties, while also lowering the need for thermal energy," said Teijo Nurminen, vice president and general manager, Technical Products, in a company statement.
Outlining the current requirements, Nurminen said low-emission surfaces improve the insulating properties of the product and structure. "These days, customers expect to get the same insulating properties as before but in thinner materials. Thinner insulation boards obviously mean cost savings to customers and their customers," he said.
"Environmental issues are important to Walki. The new line enables us to produce a product of higher quality, while also generating less waste thanks to improved runnability. Higher quality also means better functionality on customer lines", said Nurminen.
In Nurminen's view, higher energy expenses, the Kyoto Protocol on climate change, and stricter environmental requirements all contribute to the rising importance of insulation. "Walki is putting a great deal of emphasis on products that save energy. A reduction in carbon dioxide emissions and a decrease in energy consumption help to reduce environmental impact. Our new production line is a good example of this," he said.
To meet ever stricter building requirements and energy ratings for homes, insulation is expected to offer better properties and Walki says it works hard to develop functional multilayer laminates of increasingly higher quality.
And despite the economic downturn, Walki's belief in the future of the insulation industry remains strong. "Global energy expenses will not drop in the future, and the conservation of energy will continue to be a vital question," Nurminen concluded.
PIC: Nurminen says Walki's laminates have low-emission surfaces, giving better insulation properties