CE marking becomes a mandatory requirement in the UK for technical insulation products manufactured and sold in the EU from 1st July 2013.

From this date, under the Construction Products Regulation 2011 (CPR), it will become obligatory for manufacturers to apply CE marking to any of their products which are covered by a harmonised European standard (hEN) or European Technical Assessment (ETA).

The CPR harmonises the methods of assessment and test, the means of declaration of product performance and the system of conformity assessment of construction products. Such required values must be expressed in a consistent manner (technical language) as used in the harmonised technical specifications.

The recently agreed harmonised standard for technical insulation products includes a new European fire classification which includes an assessment for smoke development and the burning droplets associated with insulation materials in the event of fire. It is estimated that 95% of casualties die as a consequence of smoke inhalation rather than as a direct result of the fire hazard itself, so a low smoke density is vitally important to allow trapped people, and the emergency services, safe access to escape routes.

Manufacturer of insulation materials for mechanical services in commercial and public buildings, Armacell, has announced that its Armaflex Ultima product has achieved a fire class BL -s1, d0 (in tube form, or B –s2, d0 in sheet form) rating within the harmonised technical insulation materials classification. This new product exhibits ten times less smoke development compared to a standard elastomeric product, as well as exhibiting zero tolerance toward the development of burning droplets or particles in fire conditions. The blue coloured elastomeric Armaflex Ultima foam incorporates the Armaprene Technology and has been patented in the US, with patent pending in Europe.

The European product standards for insulation materials for building equipment and industrial installations were passed by the national standards organisations in the CEN (Comité Européen de Normalisation) in 2009 and published in the official journal of the European Union in June 2010.

From 1st July 2013 in the UK it is only permitted to sell technical insulation products in the EU countries which comply with the European product standards (and thus with the Construction Products Directive and Construction Products Regulation) and bear the CE mark.

The behaviour of Armaflex Ultima is also demonstrated in a video that can be viewed on the company’s website www.armacell.com/ArmaflexUltima.