Work is well underway on the first phase of an affordable housing project for Somerset West and Taunton Council, where the use of Marmox Thermoblocks was put forward by specialist developer, Equans Regeneration (formerly Engie Regeneration) which is leading the work on the site in Taunton.
Phase A of North Taunton Woolaway Project In the county town will see the construction of 47 new one, two and three bedroom properties for local people with energy saving and the reduction of environmental impact both being given full consideration during the design and planning. The issue of thermal bridging, in particular, is being addressed through the decision to utilise the highly insulating Thermoblocks around the perimeter of the ground floor slabs.
Some 600 of the 65mm deep, 100 x 600mm Thermoblock units have been supplied to date by a nearby branch of the Saint Gobain merchant chain along with 30 tubes of the Marmox 360 multipurpose adhesive. With over 200 homes to be built in the next few years, the total number of Thermoblocks required will run into the thousands.
The project manager for Equans Regeneration, Shawn Helley, commented: “As a specialist in affordable housing developments, we are undertaking a full design and build contract on behalf of the Somerset West and Taunton Council, which asked us to put forward a range of low carbon products for the project as part of its response to having declared a carbon or climate emergency in the region.
Although we had not employed Thermoblocks ourselves, it is a product we were aware of as being effective in combatting thermal-bridging. The client duly referred Thermoblock to the project’s carbon assessor, Hydrock, who verified their effectiveness. I was a little bit sceptical to begin with about how easy they would be to use and whether they would be strong enough, but the Thermoblocks have proved very straightforward to install for CBE – who are doing our groundworks package – using the multi-purpose Marmox adhesive for the joints:”
Each length of Thermoblock is comprised of ultra-high performance XPS insulation, encapsulating miniature epoxy concrete columns, while the top and bottom are covered by alkali resistant glass-fibre mesh, retaining a surface of fibre reinforced polymer concrete to facilitate bonding.
The concrete columns have a very low conductivity, so do not present thermal bridges themselves and when coupled with the highly insulating XPS insulation core, a combined thermal conductivity of 0.47W/mK is achieved.
Crucially, being able to employ a defined, very low thermal transmittance – derived by thermal modelling or measurement – offers a far more advantageous result than adopting the ‘default’ figure offered in SAP, which can often result in non-compliance under Part L.