ROCKFON (Dec 2016)

ROCKFON Supports WELL’s Focus on Improving Human Health and Environment through Optimized Acoustics

Chicago—Supporting the WELL Building Standard™ (WELL) goal to optimize building performance for human health and the environment, and projects pursuing WELL Certification, theROCKFON business shares its recommendations for creating comfortable interior spaces throughOptimized Acoustics™.

Contributing to successful, acoustical office designs, ROCKFONAlaska®,Color-All™,Koral™,Tropic® andSonar® acoustic stone wool ceiling panels help meet shorter reverberation times, and higher Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) values, even exceeding 0.90.


WELL is a performance-based system that measures, certifies, and monitors features of the built environment that impact human health and well-being in new and existing office buildings, their cores and shells, and their interiors. Currently in Version 1.0 (v1), Feb. 2016, WELL examines seven concepts: air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mind.

ROCKFON ceiling systems can contribute to several Optimization Features detailed in the Comfort section of WELL v1. The WELL concept of Comfort seeks to “create an indoor environment that is distraction-free, productive, and soothing. Solutions include design standards and recommendations, thermal and acoustic controllability, and policy implementation covering acoustic and thermal parameters that are known sources of discomfort.”

“Personnel costs in commercial buildings significantly outweigh the costs for design and construction and maintenance and operations. ROCKFON Optimized Acoustics and ceiling systems can reduce costs and add value, and ultimately, improve human well-being in office buildings,” says Gary Madaras, PhD, acoustics specialist at the ROCKFON business leading its Optimized Acoustics program.

“In alignment with WELL, ROCKFON recommends using ceiling systems that optimize absorption and, where needed, using walls or plenum barriers to effectively block sound between rooms,” explains Madaras. Elaborating, he cites the Optimization Features for WELL Certification of New and Existing Interiors:

  • Feature 78 calls for maximum Reverberation Times (RT60) to decrease stress and maintain comfortable sound levels through the use of sound-absorbing materials. Conference rooms are specified at 0.60 seconds and open office spaces at 0.50 seconds, which follows the trend toward more stringent absorption criteria.
  • Feature 80 also requires spaces to incorporate absorptive surfaces to help with reverberation management and improve privacy and acoustic comfort. It refers to using ceilings with high NRC values to achieve this. Open office spaces need ceilings with a minimum NRC 0.90 for 100 percent of the ceiling. Conference and teleconference rooms need ceilings with a minimum NRC 0.80 for at least 50 percent of the ceiling.
  • Feature 81 addresses noise from adjacent spaces using sound barriers to reduce transmission.
    • Noise Isolation Class (NIC) is the field measurement of total sound isolation between two rooms, specified by WELL as: NIC 40 for enclosed offices without sound masking; and NIC 53 for conference and teleconference rooms or for private offices with adjoining walls. NIC is similar to Sound Transmission Class (STC) values, which are laboratory measurements of the wall construction alone.
    • Also part of this section on sound barriers, WELL notes that all interior walls enclosing regularly occupied spaces be properly sealed along the top and bottom tracks. This commonly would be interpreted as using full-height walls and preventing noise leaks to isolate sound between adjacent spaces.

Supporting projects pursuing WELL Certification, the ROCKFON business offers its Optimized Acoustics program and an extensive portfolio of ceiling systems for optimizing the acoustic experience of commercial interiors, including sound-absorbing ceiling panels, baffles, and islands. To learn more about how ROCKFON products may contribute to achieving the Optimization Features for WELL Certification of New and Existing Interiors, please, call 800-323-7164, or

Note: The ROCKFON business and its products are not affiliated with or endorsed by the International WELL Building Institute or the WELL Building Standard. To learn more about WELL, please

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ROCKFON North America Facility Construction on Schedule, Progress Involves Global Collaboration

Chicago—Construction of the first ROCKFON North America manufacturing facility is on schedule to begin production in Mississippi by mid-2017. The exterior shell is taking shape and equipment is scheduled to arrive in the first quarter. A grand opening celebration will be planned once the new facility is operational.

Global Collaboration

The ROCKFON business is the leading supplier of stone wool acoustic solutions, a subsidiary of Denmark-based ROCKWOOL International A/S and an affiliate to ROXUL Inc. The Mississippi facility will be the fifth ROCKFON manufacturing facility in the world, extending global capacity and meeting the growing demand for ROCKFON stone wool acoustic ceiling products in North America.


To date, nearly 100 ROCKWOOL and ROXUL associates from around the world have provided their knowledge and time on the ROCKFON project to meet the highest standards on design, construction, equipment, materials, and safety. Leading the project is ROCKFON managing director John Medio, with involvement from ROXUL president Trent Ogilvie. ROCKWOOL Group’s Jean-Michel Grivotte acts as both project manager and project executive.

“The global collaboration on this project defines its success,” says Medio. “ROCKWOOL Group associates have provided valuable guidance to our North American teams to ensure that we will add the same high quality and performance products to our global capacity as offered by our other facilities.”

Based in the United States, Peter Regenberg, ROXUL vice president of operations, and Tom Smith, ROCKFON business development manager, have served as project executives from the earliest stages of the North America facility’s development. They were part of the key working groups who traveled to Poland to observe best practices and apply them in Mississippi.

Construction Progress

In March 2016, the ROCKFON business broke ground in Marshall County, Mississippi, on its new facility. Located adjacent to the existing ROXUL facility, it will span 130,000 square feet (12,000 square meters) with room for future expansion.

Since the groundbreaking, the design-build team of Allen & Hoshall architects and Flintco construction managers has been preparing the site. The site has been excavated and graded. The concrete foundations have been poured. The steel has been erected. Finally, the exterior shell is taking shape.

The new facility in Mississippi will manufacture ROCKFON stone wool acoustic ceiling products. The ROCKFON business will continue to manufacture its specialty metal ceiling panels and Chicago Metallic suspension systems in its Chicago and Baltimore facilities. Chicago Metallic suspension systems also are manufactured in Belgium, Malaysia, and China. Other ROCKFON stone wool manufacturing facilities are located in the Netherlands, Poland, France, and Russia.

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ROCKFON Ceiling Systems Contribute to Education Spaces and a Better Way to Learn

Chicago—ROCKFON ceiling systems help students, teachers, and staff benefit from optimized acoustics, healthy and safe indoor environments, sustainability, and aesthetics. “Education Spaces—Ceiling solutions for a better way to learn” shares new lessons in designing effective school, college, and university interiors. The new 16-page publication is available free for downloadhere.

“Many students are now spending more time at school and this affects the way we design and build for education. It forces us to innovate by using building materials that tackle specific challenges, such as noise, indoor air quality, fire safety, and lighting. ROCKFON stone wool ceiling products can help balance between quality, performance, and value,” says Chris Marshall, ROCKFON vice president of marketing.

“For educational facilities’ design, functionality usually tops aesthetics. But both are possible and both have an important impact on students’ progress through the academic year,” adds Marshall. “For example, color can affect how we process information. Yellow is associated with creativity and blue with better concentration.”

Credit: Pepple Photography

Credit: Pepple Photography

Students’ concentration and understanding their lessons also has a deep connection with their ability to hear their instructors. “Creating a goodacoustic experience improves learning and understanding. Every student should have the same opportunity to hear and understand what is being said. Due to its fiber structure, stone wool is one of those high-performing, sound-absorptive materials. It provides ROCKFON ceilings, baffles, and islands with excellent noise reduction capabilities,” explains ROCKFON acoustic specialist Gary Madaras.

Marshall continues, “ROCKFON ceilings provide a great line of defense against indoor health hazards and support the newest educational building codes and regulations. Our ROCKFON stone wool ceiling panels are resistant to mold, bacteria, and humidity, and areGreenGuard® Gold Certified for low VOCs. This stringent certification process considers safety factors that may impact people who are more vulnerable, such as children and seniors.”

In addition to referencing GreenGuard Gold certification, the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® ratings also promote the advantages of daylighting for sustainable buildings. The white surface of ROCKFON ceilings can reflect up to 86 percent of available light. This better distribution of natural light helps educational facilities to lower electric lighting loads and reduce cooling costs, saving both energy and associated costs.

In addition to describing how to address the challenges of aesthetics, noise, indoor air quality, sustainability, and lighting, “Education Spaces” presents facts, statistics, and inspirational examples. The publication features a case study onArkansas State University’s Humanities and Social Services building and showcases images of educational interiors from campuses around the globe.

Among the ROCKFON ceiling systems that help create successfully designed education spaces are:

  • ROCKFON Alaska®—elegant smooth white surface, best sound absorption, high fire performance, high light reflectance, in a choice of lay-in, tegular, and concealed edge designs
  • ROCKFON Color-all™—34 exclusive colors, smooth surface, best sound absorption, high fire performance, in a choice of lay-in, tegular, and concealed edge designs
  • ROCKFON Contour™—frameless acoustic baffles with high sound absorption
  • ROCKFON Impact™—better sound absorption, high fire performance, high light reflectance, in square lay-in, a reinforced glass scrim enhances impact resistance
  • ROCKFON Island™—frameless acoustic islands with high sound absorption, in a choice of square or rectangular formats
  • ROCKFON Koral™—lightly textured white surface, better sound absorption, high fire performance, high light reflectance, in a choice of square and tegular edge designs
  • ROCKFON Multiflex™—vertically installed acoustic baffles with high sound absorption, three-sided white frame or two-sided galvanized frame
  • ROCKFON Sonar®—elegant lightly textured white surface, best sound absorption, high fire performance, high light reflectance, in a choice of lay-in, tegular, and concealed edge designs, various sizes and formats including planks
  • ROCKFON Sonar Activity™—elegant lightly textured white surface, best sound absorption, high fire performance, high light reflectance, direct installation on to soffits maximizes ceiling height
  • ROCKFON Tropic®—smooth white surface, better sound absorption, high fire performance, high light reflectance, in a choice of square and tegular edge designs

Learn more about these ROCKFON ceiling systems in “Education Spaces—Ceiling solutions for a better way to learn.” Product guides and data sheets, specification and installation guidelines, and project examples also are available at For additional support, please or call 800-323-7164.

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About the ROCKFON Business

The ROCKFON business is a leading provider of acoustic stone wool and metallic ceiling solutions and suspension systems.

With the acquisition of Chicago Metallic Corporation Inc., the ROCKFON business provides customers a complete ceiling system offering combining stone wool and specialty metal ceiling panels with Chicago Metallic suspension systems.

ROCKFON complete ceiling systems are a fast and simple way to create beautiful, comfortable spaces. Easy to install and durable, they protect people from noise and the spread of fire, while making a constructive contribution toward a sustainable future.

The ROCKFON business is a subsidiary of Denmark-based ROCKWOOL International A/S, the world’s largest producer of stone wool products. ROCKWOOL International A/S is listed on the NasdaqCopenhagen stock exchange. More than 10,000 people in 37 countries are employed within the ROCKWOOL Group.

In North America, the ROCKWOOL Group operates under the name ROXUL Inc, ROCKWOOL®, ROXUL® and ROCKFON® are all registered trademarks of ROCKWOOL International A/S.

For more information, visit

Media Contact: Heather West, 612-724-8760,