Both fiberglass and stone wool insulation have merit, promote fire protection and sustainability, and offer value to architects, contractors, and property owners alike. This article’s intent is to present a scientific examination of the benefits of using each, in particular with respect to meeting fire and acoustic requirements and codes.
Fire-rated curtain walls can prevent a fire from traveling to or from neighboring buildings without restricting visibility. Unlike gypsum, masonry, and other opaque fire-rated materials, this multi-functionality can bring fire and life safety goals in line with the aesthetic design intent where building codes deem the threat of fire is significant from adjacent construction.
Glazed curtain walls are best known for their ability to visually integrate two otherwise separate spaces. Less talked about—though, perhaps more important—are curtain walls with the capability to retain visibility and access to daylight while standing guard against fire.
Stone wool’s various attributes are making the material attractive for use in suspended ceilings in educational, office, and healthcare projects. This article touches on such assemblies’ acoustics, air quality and light reflection impacts, along with information about fire performance, humidity, and dimensional stability. Design professionals must also understand the aesthetic possibilities, including flexibility with edges, sizes, colors, surfaces, shapes, and textures.
The article offers an in-depth look at design considerations for fire resistance when building with wood products. It also looks at wood engineering mechanics and design procedures that comply with the International Building Code (IBC), recognizing fire resistance demonstrated by structural wood beams and columns in actual fires.