Empowering Architects and Builders Who Utilize All the Benefits of Magnesium Oxide Panels

NEXGEN MAXTERRA™ MgO based sheathing, underlayment, and building assemblies have the ideal features to create high performance safe, efficient, resilient, and healthy residences and commercial buildings. 

The use of Magnesium Oxide based building materials is already standard practice in many parts of the world and MgO's superior qualities are increasingly being recognized in the United States. The combination of utility on construction sites, long life in finished buildings, and small environmental footprint during both manufacture and end-of-life makes MgO an increasingly important part of everyone's 21st-century construction building products portfolio.

Fire Resistance 

According to the Insurance Information Institute, a home fire occurs every 87 seconds resulting in an annual average of roughly 3,500 deaths. 40 years ago, a person may have had up to 17 minutes to escape a home fire but today due to the materials used in building and furnishing homes that time has dropped to 3 minutes.  Additionally, data from the U.S. Fire Administration shows that residential building fire dollar loss has been trending up and reached $7,866,900,000 in 2019.

Magnesium Oxide panels are fire-resistant and have some of the highest fire-safety classifications as calculated by industry regulators. This is especially significant when using MgO Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs). Generally used on a building’s exterior, SIPs are comprised of an insulating foam core inserted between MgO sheathing to provide superior insulation. But the double-sided layers of fire-resistant material also provide a very low flame spread rating (the classification of a material’s surface burning characteristics). 

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Storm Resistance 

MgO products are more impact resistant than legacy building materials, meaning high-speed collisions from debris driven by storm high winds can be better endured by structures incorporating MgO Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) and other exterior MgO building materials. Coupled with fire resistance (lightning strikes) and the ability to withstand water damage (flooding), Magnesium Oxide panels are an especially cost-effective option in the wide swathes of the United States that are prone to hurricanes and other ever-more-common extreme weather events. 

Water Resistance 

When just one inch of flood water can cause more than $25,000 in damage it’s not hard to believe that nationwide, household water damage costs up to $20 billion annually. Using a building product that is water resistant has never made more sense. MgO panels do not rapidly deteriorate when immersed in water over a short period — as happens in floods and extreme rainfall events — and can maintain structural stability even under the force of minor bending. High-performance Magnesium Oxide building materials do not warp, swell, or delaminate. They are not fully waterproof but compared to most wood and all gypsum drywall products they are far more resilient when facing temporary water inundation. 

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Insect Resistance 

Insects cause over $5 billion in damage to U.S. homes every year according to the National Pest Management Association. One of the most crucial benefits of  Magnesium Oxide panels, especially when replacing plywood and other wood products, is that bugs are not attracted to MgO. Since NEXGEN MAXTERRA panels contain no organic materials, termites, carpenter ants, wood borers, powder post beetles, and every other wood-munching bug won’t make a meal out of high-performance building panels made with MgO. 

Earthquake Resistance 

MAXTERRA MgO based panels have  dimensional stability that make these panels a impotant addition to earthquake-proof building design. Since MgO products are molded using coordinated chemical reactions, they are extremely solid when cured, creating a hardened material that is enduringly stable. The Great Wall of China and many Roman buildings originally built with MgO cement are still around for a reason. 

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The energy efficiency of MAXTERRA panels is a big part of why MgO products are so good for the environment. They are constructed without the use of toxic materials, are completely recyclable, can be disposed of safely without fear of leaching toxins into surrounding groundwater, and their manufacture actually captures carbon dioxide. In fact, significant research into using magnesium oxide as a tool to lessen the buildup of greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere is currently underway. 

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Energy Efficiency 

For over 50 years there has been a focus on energy efficient homes and commercial buildings. Utilizing Magnesium Oxide based panels in interior and exterior sheathing and subflooring applications is another way to improve energy efficiency.  MAXTERRA panels have a very good thermal resistance value of 1.14  m²K/W which is 10x better than Plywood or OSB (0.12).

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