Particularly in the case of insulated, composite panels, we have been leading the industry for many years campaigning for more stringent and more detailed testing and our product development has prioritised fire performance as a key improvement measure.
We work closely with industry bodies, such as the Association of British Insurers (ABI), fire consultants, such as Tenos and testing establishments such as Factory Mutual (FM) and LPCB to ensure that industry expectations of fire performance are high and that our products comply with the best possible standards.
Our PIR composite panel systems have achieved universal certification to LPS 1181: EXT-B, some products are also available with EXT-A30 level, and in some cases EXT–A60 certification is also currently pending.
The ABI (Association of British Insurers) updated its Technical Briefing on sandwich systems in 2008 which was first published in May 2003. In amended clause 4.4, the ABI have recognised the importance of LPS 1181 approval for external composite panel systems. See the briefing paper on the right for full details.
The revised clause states:
“For insurance underwriting purposes, Insurers use the Design Guide for the Fire Protection of Buildings as a basis for providing guidance on what they require for property protection purposes, subject to a broad based risk assessment. In respect of external composite panels, these must be suitable for the intended end use application and should either have non-combustible cores or be LPCB approved to the appropriate requirements of LPS 1181 (see paragraph 3.11) and fully satisfy insurers fire resistance requirements (insulation and integrity) through appropriate testing.” (Clause 4.4)
The video to the left shows the real life fire performance of Kingspan's FIREsafe PIR insulation core over a period 10 minutes using a propane torch burning at over 1000○C.