Researchers use recycled paper to insulate timber building panels


The EU-funded InsulaTFH (‘enhanced insulation in timber-frame housing using recycled materials’) project has come up with a way to mass produce pre-insulated panels using the cellulose fibres in waste paper.

Britain’s Cygnum Timber Frame Limited led researchers in the development of a process to convert waste paper into a pulp with strong insulating properties which can be used as a filler in timber building panels. After the paper is turned into pulp it is combined with fire retardant materials and used to fill the panels, which are then hermetically sealed. The use of recycled paper means the process has excellent green credentials, and paper is locally sourced which makes it highly economical. The method is easily installed and has a wide range of applications. In addition, the installation of cellulose filler in the mass production process is convenient for builders as it does away with the need for them to fill the panels on-site.

The production process has already undergone a trial in real conditions, and the 5130 square metres of panelling passed field tests in hot and cold climates.