The Dow-Knight CI-System was recently installed on the Kishwaukee College student center in Malta, Ill. The wall solution, featuring Thermax Wall System from Dow Building Solutions, delivers a single-source rain screen, thermal and air barrier solution. First introduced in May 2011, the system was developed to address the challenges architects face in dealing with continuous insulation-and thick insulation in particular-as it enables the attachment of cladding without creating a thermal bridge in the assembly, providing true continuous insulation.

The college student center, which is currently still under construction, involved some common challenges that many architects encounter: designing a way to attach exterior cladding that does not disrupt the integrity of continuous insulation, and air barrier assembly. When the project opens in October, the community will gain a solidly built, energy smart, weather protected building.


“Our customers are looking for versatile, high performance building envelope options that will help them design energy efficient buildings while saving time on the job,” said Doug Todd, commercial marketing manager, Dow Building Solutions North America.

“At the detail level, the … system helped solve thermal bridging issues and the single source system allows us to seamlessly transition between materials, maintaining a continuous weather barrier, despite various material intersections,” said Tony Holub, Demonica Kemper Architects.

The system was a fit in the Kishwaukee project because it allows for cladding attachment over Thermax CI at insulation thicknesses up to 3.0 inches. It also provides a complete rain screen solution with maximum energy efficiency and moisture management, meeting ASHRAE 90.1 requirements. It also eliminates the need for z-furring, which threatens to create significant potential for thermal bridging.

“The wood veneer facade provides the warmth and natural beauty we wanted to have reflected in our exterior design, and the … system allowed us to achieve our aesthetic vision without compromising the high performance building envelope,” Holub said.

In addition, production rates were increased a minimum of 25 percent due to the faster installation process.

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