Specialty Graphites for Construction and HVAC Applications

Specialty graphites are increasingly used for construction and HVAC applications. They are mainly integrated in products for thermal transfer.

Natural graphite is ideal for use in climate control systems because of its high level of thermal conductivity. When the graphite expands, the layers of carbon are dispersed and the graphite flakes become considerably larger in volume. A material then develops which has outstanding characteristics.

SGL Group markets its expanded graphite products for construction and HVAC applications under the brand names ECOPHIT® and SIGRATHERM®.

Grid radiant ceiling with graphite activation

The outstanding thermal conductivity of expanded natural graphite increases the efficiency and performance of HVAC systems and other applications where the thermal conductivity plays a major role regarding thermal transfer, e.g. in radiant ceilings. Radiant ceilings do not only warm or cool the ambient air. They radiate their energy directly to the person or surfaces. In effect this means: the desired temperature is achieved without draughts and dust swirls. What’s more, the indoor climate is perceived as markedly more pleasant.

Sample applications are radiant ceilings with metal cassettes as well as seamless radiant ceiling systems. Radiant ceilings master great challenges with relatively low energy consumption compared to other solutions in applications including
 

  • Administration buildings
  • Hospitals
  • Airports
  • Housing facilities
  • Museums
  • Shopping centers
  • Service halls
  • Hotels
  • Restaurants

Specialty graphite products for radiant ceilings

Radiant Ceilings with ECOPHIT expanded graphite require lower flow temperatures for heating and higher temperatures for cooling - making those ceilings ideal for renewable energy sources such as heat pumps, geothermal or solar thermal energy. The energy is distributed evenly and rapidly over the entire surface of the ceiling and there will also be savings for the system engineering costs. Energy savings of up to 40% on average are possible.

Thermographic image: Surface
temperature of metal ceiling elements
after one minute of cooling. Panel on the
left equipped with ECOPHIT, on the right
without
Structure of a grid metal ceiling with
graphite activation

Thanks to the high performance of the overall system, the radiant ceiling equipped with ECOPHIT achieves a desirable indoor climate very quickly. It provides a comfortable room temperature not only without draughts or dust swirls but also without noise pollution. The pleasant room acoustic is an added bonus.

Radiant ceilings with ECOPHIT's high level of efficiency saves on materials for ceiling installation - 15% less active surfaces allows more room for design features such as lighting or technology. A wide variety of surface designs are available to suit individual styles.

Coarse and fine SIGRATHERM GFG graphite powder to be used as additive for enhancing thermal conductivity

SGL Group's expanded graphite product family comprises not only graphite foils and sheets of widely varying densities but also powders and granules made of pure graphite. Those are highly conductive additives increasing the thermal conductivity of several construction materials and enabling a significantly faster and more evenly heating and cooling of surfaces.

 

 

SIGRATHERM expanded graphite powders and granules can be used in a wide variety of construction and HVAC applications where electrical and thermal conductivity properties are essential. Typical applications of our SIGRATHERM powders and granules are
 

  • Electrically or thermally conductive plastics
  • Antistatic floor coverings and adhesives
  • Plasterboards for radiant ceiling installations
  • Plasters for wall heatings systems
  • Firebricks used for stoves
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