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EPiC database - Polystyrene (EPS/XPS) insulation

posted on 10.12.2020, 20:46 by Robert Crawford, André Stephan, Fabian Prideaux
This material is part of the free Environmental Performance in Construction (EPiC) Database. The EPiC Database contains embodied environmental flow coefficients for 250+ construction materials using a comprehensive hybrid life cycle inventory approach.

Polystyrene (PS) is a synthetic polymer and thermoplastic. Polystyrene insulation is made from Expanded (EPS) or Extruded Polystyrene (XPS). It has a low thermal conductivity (0.03-0.038 W/(m·K)) and is a lightweight material.

PS insulation is made by polymerising styrene monomers in polystyrene before moulding it (EPS) or extruding it (XPS) into rigid foam panels.

PS insulation is widely used in the construction industry. EPS is used in walls and on roofs that do not require stepping onto. XPS, with its increased compressive strengths, can be stepped upon and is therefore more common on roofs.