Fire Safety of Insulated Metal Panels
Insulated Metal Panels (IMPs) are lightweight composite exterior wall and roof panels with two layers of coated thin sheet metal (typically steel or aluminum) wrapped around a rigid foam core to form a stiff composite. They are molded in a variety of styles and sizes depending on the application. The foam plastic core gives these panels superior insulating properties, helping to provide increased energy efficiency. Also, the metal surfaces offer various design capabilities (for interior or exterior applications) as well as a sustainable barrier to weather.
They can be used for exterior and interior design but are typically used in exterior walls. They have both semi-gloss and matte finishes, are available in a variety of colors and can be shaped and formed into many different textures, widths, profiles and finishes, enabling virtually any aesthetic desired for walls and roofs. Depending on how they are employed, IMPs also act as a
rain screen and water barrier, preventing water from entering a building from the outside, and from spreading from room to room in the interior. Since fire safety is a key issue in construction, the presence of metal walls can act as a barrier to fire to help keep an active fire from spreading. Fire safety will be the focus of the remainder of this document.