Building America Team: University of Minnesota – NorthernSTAR Building America Partnership
Partners: Home Innovation Research Labs, Thrive Home Builders, Huber Engineered Woods, and ARES Consulting
In their earlier Building America project: Affordable, Solid Panel "Perfect Wall" (Building and Delivery) System, the University of Minnesota demonstrated the performance, cost, and constructability of their solid panel system. This system offers a streamlined solution to deliver a moisture-managed, high-performance envelope more quickly and with better quality assurance.
Further testing of the solid panel “Perfect Wall” System for structural performance and adaptation for its use in multifamily buildings will accelerate the technology’s path to market.
To bring this technology to scale in the broader residential market, additional research will be conducted to address critical challenges limiting adoption. First, the structural performance of the system will be laboratory tested to streamline building code approval. Through partnerships with Home Innovation Research Labs, ARES Consulting, and Huber Engineered Woods, a test protocol will be developed and executed to meet ASTM standards. Second, the solid panel system must be able to move directly into the multifamily market, especially attached townhomes and 3- to 4-unit buildings. This research will provide adaptation of the single-family structural solutions along with the investigation of a compatible party wall to demonstrate market transition of this technology. The University of Minnesota will work with Thrive Home Builders to develop solutions for multifamily production builders.