As efficiency becomes more of a focal point in the building equation, greater emphasis is being placed on airtight structures. But airtight building envelopes create inherent challenges, including moisture, which can become trapped in vapor-retarded walls, cultivating mold and other contaminants, and causing long-term health issues.
Havelock Wool’s new Smart Wall smart enclosure system tackles that problem with a bevy of highly efficient, durable and sustainable products, including the company’s own sheep’s wool insulation, pro clima membranes and Gutex insulation board.
Walls incorporating sheep wool form a low-energy, biophilic approach to wall system design and construction, leveraging the efficiency of airtightness without disrupting inherent vapor drive. Made of 100 percent natural, nontoxic materials, they are structured to create a long-lasting building enclosure.
The monolithic membranes allow for air tightness while offering an escape route for inevitable vapor. Mento 1000, a Tyvek replacement, is airtight open to the outside up to 36 perms. Intello Plus is reinforced to serve as insulation netting while being airtight and vapor variable from 0.17 to 13.2 perms. Natural wool in the continuous insulation cavity—and in the service cavity where applicable—enables moisture to be managed, as wool will absorb and desorb against 65 percent relative humidity. Moreover, wool is a keratin and will not support the growth of mold, thereby alleviating numerous challenges posed by some other forms of insulation. And, wool is a natural air cleaner, trapping volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can lead to reduced indoor air quality.