K2013: BASF’s aerogel-insulating panel a breakthrough for buildings

German chemicals firm BASF had a recent launch of a new insulating material, a product of seven years of R&D, that also coincided with the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of a pilot plant on the works site to supply sample quantities of the new insulating material as of mid-2014. BASF is thus investing in its location in Lower Saxony where the company employs a roughly 1,380-strong workforce.

Slentite insulating panels for the construction and refrigeration sectors have been developed under the supervision of Dr Marc Fricke. The panel is extremely thin and space-saving as well as easy to process, says BASF. This has been made possible by BASF’s first-time feat of developing an aerogel with insulation values in the form of a mechanically strong panel. Thus, this is the first time that an aerogel has become available as a solid panel.

In the further course of the product premiere, Dr Rudolf Plagge of the Institute of Building Climatology at TU Dresden illuminated the future requirements of insulating materials such as good moisture regulation, while architect Alexander Kahnt also looked ahead to the coming years. In his view, growing urbanisation, dramatic population growth and the shortage of natural resources will call for new architectural solutions. And BASF will make its contribution with Slentite. The company now intends to realise pilot projects with selected partners in architecture and industry.


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