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Closed Cell Spray Foam Insulation from Bayer MaterialScience Helps Hurricane-Damaged Community Rebuild with Stronger, More Sustainable Buildings
BaySealâ„¢ Spray Foam is Being Used to Insulate and Strengthen the New Houses and Municipal Buildings
By Staff

March 10, 2009 - Long Beach, Mississippi - In the aftermath of any natural disaster, a successful rebuilding effort is essential to return the affected area to its previous state. These efforts are extensive projects that often require massive amounts of resources to effectively revitalize the devastated area. After Hurricane Katrina, it was obvious that the Gulf Coast would have to undergo a lengthy period of rebuilding before it would be returned to its earlier condition. Fortunately, this region has seen an unprecedented outpouring of humanitarian support from around the country to aid the process. A shining example of this altruism is visible in the town of Long Beach, Mississippi.

Long Beach is the site of a “Community Revitalization Housing Program” sponsored and coordinated by ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steel company. Instead of simply rebuilding the town, this project has been undertaken with the mission of creating new building structures using steel frame construction which will be able to withstand such storms in the future. This goal is illustrated by the company’s Project Statement which reads: “Due to a lack of contractors with experience in residential steel construction techniques, we are seeing Gulf Coast residents rebuild wood and masonry residential buildings that cannot withstand the hurricane wind forces that are likely in the region. Therefore, ArcelorMittal and our construction partners have committed to building steel framed houses that will serve as learning laboratories to educate residential contractors in the area on the latest residential steel construction techniques[…] It is our hope that by educating contractors in hands on residential steel construction techniques, we can transform tomorrow by building safer, more sustainable housing for the region[…]”

 /></p>  <p><br />  In order to accomplish this philanthropic mission, ArcelorMittal has enlisted the help of strategic building partners who are able to effectively complement and augment the steel frame being utilized within these structures. One of the primary partners involved with this project was BaySystems who donated polyurethane spray foam to both insulate the buildings and strengthen their structural integrity. In addition to these key factors, Bayseal™ 1.9 pound closed-cell spray foam also offers numerous other advantages. With an exceptional R-value of 6.9 per inch, the Bayseal™ foam significantly reduces heating and cooling costs while virtually eliminating air leakage and providing a barrier to keep out dust and allergens. Also critical in this particular situation is the fact that the closed cell spray foam insulation is the only insulation classified by FEMA as “highly resistant to floodwater damage”, capable of withstanding direct and prolonged contact with floodwater without sustaining significant damage."  Fiberglass batt, on the other hand, is classified as “unacceptable”.<br />  <br />  Elite Services of Lake Charles, LA was contracted to apply the spray foam insulation in the buildings. Although this was the contractor’s first venture spraying steel panel systems, they are no strangers to this type of project. Elite Services is also currently working on spraying a subdivision of 1,000 homes in Galveston, TX that were damaged by Hurricane Ike.<br />  <br />  The result of this collaboration is the Safe Guard Long Beach Home, ”a home designed to deal with the extreme environment facing the coast like mold, mildew, termites, fire and hurricane force winds.” Two pilot homes have already been built and the plan calls for the construction of another fifty to complete the subdivision. The structural backbone of these houses is a Fro Mar Structural Steel Panel System which has been greatly reinforced by the application of the Bayseal™ spray foam. In fact, these houses have been tested to withstand sheer force winds in excess of those associated with a Category 5 hurricane and it is expected that they could endure up to a Category 7 storm, although no real test evidence yet exists to prove this. They have even been tested to survive “missile” debris impacts!</p>  <p align= /></p>  <p><br />  <br />  As well as being extremely durable, the construction of these buildings using the combination of steel and spray foam has resulted in a uniquely Green home that is affordable to build and maintain. When it comes to maintenance, advantages of these structures include a superior resistance to rust, mold and mildew and the virtually complete elimination of insect infestation. In testing, the Fro Mar System showed a decrease in the number of hours that gypsum and other materials are exposed to conditions that promote mold growth, compared with a traditional wood wall system. The Bayseal™ closed-cell spray foam also retards moisture infiltration to significantly reduce the chance of mold growth. Further, the steel frame renders termite and carpenter ant infestation virtually non-existent. To provide added protection, the steel has been hot dipped in a galvanized coating to resist rust for over 150 years as confirmed by tests performed by the Zinc Research Organization, Inc. over a seven year period. Other testing has been conducted at the National Association of Home Builders Research Center and Certified Testing Labs of Dade County. Additionally, the houses meet the requirements for the Institute for Business & Home Safety’s Fortified Home Program.<br />  <br />  In addition to the residential housing project, BaySystems and Elite Services of Lake Charles will be bidding on the opportunity to spray closed-cell foam into the new City Town Hall, the next project in the Community Rebuild Program."<br />  <br />  Lorena Polazzi, BaySystems’ sales representative for the East South Central Region, sums up the positive aspects of this project: “It is inspiring to work for a company that readily seized the opportunity to become proactive in a project of this nature. In doing so, much more was accomplished than the remaking of buildings in a town. We had a part in changing the very lives of the people of Long Beach. In tough times, such as now, the assistance of all of those involved truly stands out as an act of good will!"<br />  <br />  Effective March 1, 2007, Bayer MaterialScience has combined its entire global polyurethane systems business under the umbrella brand of BaySystems™. This change affects not only existing product brands in this segment, but also the global network of polyurethane systems houses. More information about BaySystems™ can be found at <a href=BaySystemsSpray.

Bayer MaterialScience LLC is one of the leading producers of polymers and high-performance plastics in North America and is part of the global Bayer MaterialScience business with nearly 15,400 employees at 30 sites around the world and 2007 sales of 10.4 billion euros. Business activities are focused on the manufacture of high-tech polymer materials and the development of innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction, medical, and sports and leisure industries. Our inorganic basic chemicals unit produces chlorine and related essential products for the chemicals industry.

Bayer Corporation, headquartered in Pittsburgh, is a subsidiary of Bayer AG, an international health care, nutrition and high-tech materials group based in Leverkusen, Germany. In North America, Bayer had 2007 net sales of 8.1 billion euros and employed 16,800 at year end. Bayer’s three subgroups, Bayer HealthCare, Bayer CropScience and Bayer MaterialScience, improve people’s lives through a broad range of essential products that help diagnose, prevent and treat diseases; protect crops and enhance yields; and advance automobile safety and durability.

Thomas Erdner, Phone: 412-777-5200

This news release contains forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in our annual and interim reports filed with the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

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