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ANSI Approves Standard for Structural Insulated Panels

Tacoma, WA—The ANSI/APA PRS 610.1-2013 Standard for Performance-Rated Structural Insulated Panels in Wall Applications was approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), establishing the first national consensus-based standard for structural insulated panels (SIPs). SIPs are a panelized building system composed of insulating foam sandwiched between two structural facings, providing an energy-efficient building enclosure for both residential and commercial buildings.

Several members of the Structural Insulated Panel Association (SIPA) Technical Committee served as members of the ANSI committee and worked closely with APA to develop the 36-page document that provides standardized test methods and performance requirements for SIPs used in wall applications. APA served as the ANSI accredited standards developer and secretariat for the standard.

SIPA members and proponents of the energy-efficient building technology see the new publication as a significant move towards greater acceptance among design professionals and code officials.

“The recently approved APA/ANSI PRS 610.1-2013 SIP performance standard for walls is a breakthrough moment for the SIP industry,” said Todd Bergstrom, Vice President, Technology of AFM Corporation and member of the SIPA Technical Committee. “The SIP consensus standard will lead to greater acceptance of SIPs by engineers, architects, builders, code officials, and all others in the building industry.”

SIPA, working in concert with APA, plans to submit a code change proposal to the ICC to include the completed standard as a referenced document in the International Building Code (IBC). Although prescriptive provisions for building with SIPs are included in the International Residential Code (IRC), there is currently no mention of SIPs in the IBC.

“The approval by ANSI establishes a national consensus standard for SIPs, which opens doors for acceptance in the building codes,” said SIPA Technical Committee chair Tom Williamson. “Having a national consensus standard referenced in the code will lend a lot of credibility to the SIP industry.”

According to Williamson, the standard is a key element in the SIPA Technical Committee’s larger goal to ultimately have SIPs recognized by the American Wood Council (AWC) by inclusion in the National Design Specification for Wood Construction, itself an ANSI-approved standard.

In May of 2013, SIPA finished the first phase of aspect ratio testing on SIP shear walls for nonresidential construction. This two-phase project is aimed at providing the necessary shear wall test data that will be packaged with the APA/ANSI PRS 610.1-2013 SIP performance standard for submission to the AWC for the recognition of SIPs in the AWC/ANSI Special Design Provisions for Wind and Seismic.

APA/ANSI PRS 610.1-2013 is available for download from the APA Publications Library.

About SIPA
The Structural Insulated Panel Association (SIPA) is a non-profit association representing manufacturers, suppliers, dealer/distributors, design professionals, and builders committed to providing quality structural insulated panels for all segments of the construction industry.

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