Vacuum Insulated Panel(VIP)

Vacuum insulated panel(VIP) is a thermal insulation choice used in building construction. Although it’s not suitable in our situation due to its high cost, but it’s worthwhile to know something about it.

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VIPs consist of  membrane walls to prevent the air from entering the panel, a panel of a rigid, highly-porous material, such as aerogel, fumed silica or glass fiber to surport the membrane wall against atmosphere pressure and chemicals to collect gas leaked through the membrane.

The principle of VIPs is reduction of convection and conduction with a better perfomance than conventional insulation due to less gas molecules.

The advantage of VIPs is its low thermal conductivity of 0.004 W/(m*K) at panel center, compared to standard mineral wool 0.044 W/(m*K) rigid polyurethane foam 0.024 W/(m*K). It’s indicated in the figure below.                                                 .

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The disadvantage of VIPs is much lower thermal resistance per unit price than conventional materials. Aerogels are more difficult to manufacuture and high quality of membrane and sealing joins are reaquired to maintain vacuum in a long time. Besides, VIP can not be cut to fit and non-standard sizes must be ordered to make, which also increases the cost.

Here is the reference link: http://www.microthermgroup.com/low/EXEN/site/vip-intro.aspx