KNAUF’S NEW SAFEBOARD TAKES THE LEAD IN X-RAY PROTECTION
A new core formulation makes a specialist plasterboard from Knauf Drywall a real alternative to lead-based radiation shielding for X-ray facilities in healthcare and other sectors. New Knauf Safeboard is a 12.5mm gypsum board used in one or more layers to provide the specified shielding in standard drywall constructions. Yellow-cored Safeboard has been recognised by the Construction Products Association as one of the most innovative products of the year.
Knauf Safeboard is a simple and highly effective alternative to lead sheeting in the walls of X ray facilities in medical, dental, veterinary and industrial environments. Typical drywall constructions using Knauf Safeboard offer the same radiation protection as 1 2mm of lead sheeting – the requirement for the more than 80% of X-ray equipment in the 70-125kV range. Safeboard constructions also provide excellent acoustic insulation and fire resistance.
Stuart Hiscott, Knauf Drywall Product Manager, says: “Knauf Safeboard raises the bar for high performance plasterboards, offering hospital developers in particular a practical solution for radiation protection, and significantly reduces the amount of lead required in an installation. With our drywall systems already an established part of modern hospital construction, this complementary solution for specialist areas will be a boon to specifiers and dry lining contractors on new-build projects or subsequent alterations, ensuring compliance with the strict safety requirements for radiation areas.”
Safeboard’s distinctive yellow core incorporates barium sulphate, which is already in common medical use for X ray examination of the digestive system. Each board is thoroughly X-rayed on the production line to ensure radiation-tightness.
Stuart Hiscott says Knauf Safeboard is an exciting addition to the company’s range of partition solutions. “We see good potential for this product which has many advantages over previous systems that necessitated laminating lead sheeting to conventional plasterboard. We now have a ready-made product with excellent properties and the ability to accommodate architectural detailing with ease. Significantly, our Project Specification Managers are able to produce full specifications, based on a report from Radiation Protection Advisers – no additional technical knowledge is required to specify Safeboard. ”
Knauf Safeboard is installed in the same way as other Knauf Drywall plasterboards, with minimal additional training required for installers. It can be cut to size using the score and snap technique. For most healthcare applications, one or two layers (depending on the X ray tube voltage) are fixed on each side of 70mm Knauf ‘C’ Studs, and Knauf Crown Partition Roll in the void. The construction may be finished with a layer of 12.5mm Knauf high performance plasterboard, where specified for enhanced acoustic, fire, moisture or impact resistance. To ensure continuous radiation protection, joints in Knauf Safeboard are staggered and filled with Safeboard Putty – a yellow-dyed gypsum powder with radiation protection, which is supplied dry in 5kg tubs and is mixed with water on site.
Knauf Drywall manufactures a full range of plasters, plasterboards, insulating laminates, dry flooring, drywall accessories, and metal sections for domestic, commercial and public sector applications. Knauf Drywall pioneered carbon neutral plasterboard in the UK with Knauf Futurepanel. Knauf Drywall also actively promotes recycling from building sites and has a zero waste policy in its energy efficient factories at Sittingbourne in Kent and Immingham on Humberside.