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Products designed with your project in mind.

Expanded Perlite vs. Mineral Wool Insulation

Both perlite insulation and mineral wool insulation have their own benefits, and the choice between them depends on various factors such as cost, performance requirements, and specific application needs. Here are some benefits of using perlite insulation instead of mineral wool insulation in a refinery:

  • Thermal Performance: Perlite insulation offers excellent thermal insulation properties, similar to mineral wool. It has a low thermal conductivity, meaning it effectively resists the transfer of heat, which is crucial for maintaining optimal operating temperatures in a refinery.

  • Lightweight: Perlite is lightweight compared to mineral wool, making it easier to handle and install. This can be advantageous in refinery applications where weight considerations are important, such as in overhead installations or areas with limited load-bearing capacity.

  • Chemical Resistance: Perlite is chemically inert and does not react with most chemicals found in refinery environments. This makes it suitable for use in areas where exposure to corrosive chemicals or high levels of humidity is a concern.

  • Low Moisture Absorption: Perlite has low moisture absorption properties, which helps prevent moisture buildup within the insulation material. This is important for maintaining the insulation's thermal performance (see below graph of the effects of moisture on the thermal conductivity of mineral wool) and preventing issues such as corrosion under insulation (CUI) in refinery equipment.

Moisture and MW Chart.png
  • Fire Resistance: Perlite insulation exhibits good fire resistance properties, similar to mineral wool. It has a high melting point and does not contribute to the spread of flames, making it suitable for use in high-temperature environments typical of refinery operations.

  • Non-Combustible: Perlite insulation is non-combustible, meaning it does not burn or support combustion. This is an important safety consideration in refinery applications where fire hazards are a concern.

  • Cost-Effective: Perlite insulation is generally more cost-effective than mineral wool insulation, which can result in cost savings for refinery projects, especially when considering large-scale installations.

  • Sustainability: Perlite is a naturally occurring mineral that is abundantly available, making it a sustainable insulation option compared to some synthetic insulation materials. Additionally, perlite insulation can be recycled and reused, further enhancing its sustainability credentials.

  • Dimensional Stability: Perlite insulation maintains its dimensional stability over time, even under varying temperature and humidity conditions. This ensures long-term performance and insulation effectiveness in refinery applications.

  • Versatility: Perlite insulation is available in various forms such as loose-fill, pre-formed boards, and pipe coverings, providing versatility in application and installation options to suit different refinery requirements.


It's important to note that while perlite insulation offers these benefits, the suitability of either perlite or mineral wool insulation for a specific refinery application should be evaluated based on factors such as temperature requirements, chemical exposure, installation considerations, and budget constraints. Consulting with insulation experts and conducting a thorough analysis of the specific requirements will help determine the most suitable insulation material for the refinery project.

Our Products Lines

Our expanded perlite fitting covers, reinforced perlite pipe covering, and precision-cut blankets are hydrophobic and help reduce the risk of CUI (corrosion under insulation) while maintaining excellent thermal efficiencies. Learn more about our products below.


SMC's perlite fitting covers are hydrophobic and easy to install compared to field-fabricated fitting covers with glue joints. Our molded solutions increase the ease of installation and reduce the risk of corrosion under insulation. 


AU-1200 is our patented, reinforced perlite pipe covering. Designed to be stronger than regular perlite pipe covering, our enhanced flexural strength results in less product waste during transport and installation.


SMC Industries prefabricates hydrophobic blanket insulation materials for projects ranging from -200 to 648°C.  By cutting the pieces to fit piping and fittings to ASTM standards, installation time and waste are reduced. 


SMC Industries' Dura-Jac SX product lines are made exclusively using Proto Corporation's PVC materials.

Proto Corporation manufactures the most extensive variety of PVC fitting covers and jacketing systems. 

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