Vermiculite for fireproofing
Vermiculite aggregates has been used in fire-proofing products for decades. Among the better known uses of vermiculite for fire-proofing has been in fire-proof plasters.
Traditionally “plaster” had been made from a mix of gypsum plaster and sand; and sometimes to strength the plaster reinforcing materials like horsehair was added. The problem with sand plaster is that in a fire the sand “explodes” and cracks, and can be easily destroyed.
In contrast, vermiculite can offer a product which is both lightweight and fire-proof. For many years, these plasters were used primarily in large, urban construction where the combined benefits of weight reduction and fire-proofing were desired. They were especially used to fire-proof steel beams, columns, and floors.
Vermiculite is light, insert, inorganic and fireproofing, it has been a major ingredient in most fireproofing door cores and safes.
The fireproofing characteristics of vermiculite concrete are recognized nationwide by insurance companies, state rating bureaus and local building officials. A range of productions, from boards and panels to spray applied plasters, use the excellent fire resistance properties of exfoliated vermiculite.
Basic benefits of vermiculite in fire-protection and fire-proofing
Lightweight – Weights approximately 60% less than many sand products, so with lightweight plasters.
Insulating – 4 times more resistant to heat transmission than sand plasters … permits saving in heating and air conditioning costs … conserves energy.
Fire Retardant – Non-combustible and non-toxic … provides up to 5-hour fire protection with minimum weight and thickness … more than 50 fire tested designs by recognized laboratories.
Noise Reduction – Reduces sound transmission between partitions.
Adaptable – Packaged in 3 or 4 cubic feet (85 or 113 liter) bags in the United States and Canada and in 100 liter bags in most other countries. Easy to measure, mix and handle … job mixing permits proper proportioning to meet different plaster based materials specifications.
Durable – Cannot rot or decay … strong but not brittle … endures freeze-thaw exposure … successfully used on major construction projects since 1946.