Whether the insulation task involves heat, light, sound, moisture or gases, aluminium foil is a high performance material. Its highly reflective surface has, forexample, earned it an indispensable place in the insulation of domestic, commercial and industrial buildings. In ducting and pipework too, where the suppression of heat loss or gain is essential, alufoil’s reflective (up to 98% of light and infrared heat) and barrier properties make it the material of choice.
The versatility of aluminium foil – easy to laminate, to shape and to coat with a protective lacquer – takes into a great variety of situations. Its insulation role extends into fire protection. In ‘fire walls’ for vehicles and ships, for fire-resistant doors and building panels, aluminium foil with its melting point of around 660 °C and its heat conductivity dissipates heat and stops access to the oxygen required to support flames.
In electrical cables, aluminium foil is an essential component providing long-term protection. It also insulates against magnetic and radio frequency emissions. Used in fibre-optic cables,aluminium foil acts as a ‘tracer’ to enable testing of the integrity of cable links.