Feature Article /
May 23, 2023

UPM Biochemicals and URSA Develop New Sustainable Insulation

UPM Biochemicals and URSA Develop New Sustainable Insulation

Image: URSA

HELSINKI — UPM Biochemicals and URSA, one of the leading producers of glass wool and mineral wool in Europe, today announced the development of more environmentally friendly building insulation that will help to reduce energy consumption and lower CO2 emissions.

URSA will produce sustainable glass wool made from an innovative, binder based on UPM BioPiva lignin. It will be one of the most natural insulation material available on the market.

Synthetic resins from fossil-based raw materials have traditionally been used as binders in the production of glass wool and mineral wool respectively. The new binder implemented by Ursa is based on the proprietary lignin-resin technology developed by UPM Biochemicals. URSA and UPM Biochemicals have closely collaborated in optimizing binder composition for best physical characteristics of the new insulation material and smooth runnability on URSA’s production lines.

Lignin is a natural polymer found in wood and other plants. UPM BioPiva™ lignin is a sustainably produced, cost-effective and versatile raw material that has proven valuable in the creation of many value-added industrial applications, especially in lignin-based phenolic resins (LPF).

“We are thrilled about having reached this milestone together with our partners from URSA, as it marks a potentially disruptive innovation for the insulation materials industry in general, and a great achievement for URSA with its long-held vision to go green and to reduce the carbon footprint of its products,” explained Christian Hübsch, Director Sales & Marketing at UPM Biochemicals.

UPM Biochemicals is committed to the sustainable transformation of multiple industries and is actively engaging with partners such as URSA to develop new, sustainable applications and products based on wood-based biochemicals.

“We undertook long-term studies with UPM Biochemicals to assess the viability of replacing synthetic resins with a new bio-based binder and we are excited to produce one of the most sustainable glass wool insulation materials available,” added Wolfgang Marka, Managing Director of URSA-Adria.

“URSA is dedicated to the manufacture and commercialization of thermal and acoustic insulation materials oriented towards sustainability and energy efficiency in buildings. Our latest premium products using a lignin binder represent the beginning of new technology for the development of sustainable insulation material in the construction industry.”