In the world of modern logistics, cold storage facilities play a critical role in maintaining the freshness and quality of perishable goods. These facilities ensure that items are stored at the correct temperatures in order to preserve and prolong the life of these goods, from pharmaceuticals to food products.
Cold storage facilities require a substantial amount of energy to maintain the desired low temperatures, resulting in significant cost and a high carbon footprint.
However in recent years, research has been fundamental in the development of new and innovative solutions that are increasingly efficient, from the improvement of materials to maintain cold conditions, to the use of technical cold storage chambers.
Incorporating Armatherm™ 500 structural thermal break material into a cold storage facility can play a pivotal role in achieving and maintaining temperature control. By curbing heat transfer through walls, floors and ceilings, these breaks assist in upholding consistent temperatures, ensuring that perishable items are stored in optimal conditions. The 500-490 and 500-320 material at 50mm or thicker is also Passiv Haus certified for a column base application.
One of the most significant benefits of incorporating thermal breaks into cold storage facilities is the reduction in energy consumption. Thermal breaks improve the insulation of the building envelope, resulting in reduced energy requirements for cooling systems, and ultimately lower operational cost.
Case study: Aldi Distribution Centre
Armatherm™ 500 was recently chosen to insulate the 1000 square metre cold store room of a new Aldi distribution centre, which is used to stock thousands of frozen and chilled products before distribution to stores across the UK.
The thermal break was installed directly under steel column bases which bridge the floor slab insulation. Support columns pass through the load bearing slab insulation to warm ground beneath, short circuiting the insulation barrier.
As this job called for a material with high-compressive strength and fantastic insulation properties, Armatherm™ 500 was the perfect solution for Aldi.
Since the project, Aldi has appointed Armatherm™ to provide thermal breaks for 3 more of its distribution centres.
Not only is Armatherm™ 500 structural thermal break material the ideal solution to prevent thermal bridging in buildings to reduce heat loss, it is also suitable for cold storage facilities to prevent the subgrade from freezing.
Preventing subgrade freezing is crucial to maintaining the structural integrity of the facility. Armatherm™ 500, strategically placed beneath column bases and other load-bearing components, creates a barrier that not only safeguards the foundation from potential damage due to freezing, but also contributes to a more stable and secure overall structure.
Internal steel columns traditionally extend through the building envelope floor slab and insulation at their base. In low temperature buildings such as freezer rooms and cold storage facilities, this creates a thermal bridge and point transmittance (heat loss) at the steel column base.
Armatherm™ 500, structural thermal break material can support and transfer column loads while providing an effective thermal break at the column connection. With R values as high as R 3.8 per inch, Armatherm™ 500 can help to meet the ASHRAE requirement for continuous insulation as well as the baseline insulation requirements for floors in refrigerated storage facilities.
Reducing heat flow within a building’s thermal envelope also reduces potential issues such as condensation. In cold storage facilities, condensation can lead to issues such as mould growth and compromised product quality. Armatherm™’s structural 500 thermal break material helps to prevent condensation by maintaining a consistent temperature difference.
From mitigating thermal bridging to preventing subgrade freezing, thermal breaks are a vital tool in creating and maintaining a highly efficient and effective cold storage environment.
By investing in Armatherm™’s thermal break solutions, cold storage facility owners can achieve long-term benefits for both their bottom line and the environment. For more information about how we can help, please get in touch today.
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