Innovative Building Envelope Solutions for Nearly 40 Years

DuPont ™ Tyvek ® - Innovative Building Envelope Solutions for Nearly 40 Years

DuPont™ Tyvek®: Innovative Building Envelope Solutions for Nearly 40 Years

DuPont™ Tyvek®, a unique nonwoven material, has been enabling new dimensions of protection, safety and security for people, places and things since it was introduced in 1967. Lightweight and durable, Tyvek® is breathable, yet resistant to water, abrasion, and aging, making it ideal for a wide variety of applications across diverse industries.

One of the most commonly known applications is in construction where products in the family of building envelope solutions, such as Tyvek® Supro®, Tyvek® Reflex®, Tyvek® FireCurb™ , Flashing by Tyvek® and AirGuard® vapour control layer are used to create more comfortable, energy-efficient buildings with fewer chances for moisture damage caused by water buildup.

Recognized as an industry leader since inventing the building wrap category in 1978, DuPont continues to deliver innovative building envelope solutions for the next generation of new construction and renovation of existing buildings.

A Brief History 

The history of Tyvek® began in 1955 when DuPont researcher Jim White made a chance discovery of a new fibre source.  A program to develop the new material was set up and a year later DuPont submitted a patent proposal for strong yarn linear polyethylene.  It took several more years for research teams to perfect the complex manufacturing process, which was based on the flash-spinning technology invented by DuPont scientist Herbert Blades.  In 1965, the new engineered sheet structure was registered under the trademark name Tyvek®, and in April 1967 DuPont began commercial production.

Tyvek® was first adopted for use as shipping envelopes, protective apparel and medical packaging in the early 1970s. Interest continued to grow in finding new applications for this one-of-a-kind invention that offered a unique combination of superior barrier protection, durability and breathability.

By 1978, DuPont had introduced the first house wrap product in the U.S. to help make houses more durable, comfortable and energy efficient. DuPont later registered this product under the trademark name Tyvek® HomeWrap®.  This invention of the building wrap category established DuPont as an industry leader and helped change forever the way homes and commercial structures are built.

In the U.K. in 1990 Tyvek® launched a new category in the construction business: the breather underlay – a friendly alternative to felt, giving greater building insulation without increasing the thickness of insulation material.

In the decades since introducing Tyvek® breather membranes, DuPont has developed many unique products backed by sophisticated building science. The integrated family of Tyvek® Building Envelope Solutions is designed to meet the needs of new construction and renovation of existing buildings ranging from single-family homes and apartment buildings to schools, ,sports arenas and other commercial structures. 

2005: Tyvek® is the first manufacturer to claim CE marking for its entire product range. More than 25 products are developed to meet specific countries’ building codes.

2006: To meet stricter energy efficient building codes, Tyvek® introduces a new generation of metallised underlays and AVCL (Tyvek® Reflex & AirGuard® Reflective). Their technology combines high moisture diffusion capacity and high surface reflectivity in a single product.

2008: Tyvek® UV Facade responds to new trends for ventilated façades. It offers proven long-term resistance for open and rainscreen cladding systems.

2009: In the quest for optimal airtightness, DuPont launches a range of advanced Tyvek® tapes that helps reduce uncontrolled air leakage through the building envelopes.  Genuine Tyvek® tapes ensure compatibility with Tyvek® underlays and AirGuard® AVCLs, and help guarantee long-term performance and durability.

2012: Safety has always been a core value at DuPont –­ and with Tyvek® FireCurb™ flame retardant breather membranes, the company takes protection to a whole new level. The new development uses patented technology to add effective flame retardancy to the long list of Tyvek® benefits. When ignited, Tyvek® FireCurb™ breather membranes self-extinguish the flame instead of spreading the fire. The halogen-free flame retardant coating considerably limits the formation of droplets and reduces smoke, and has only limited impact on the proven Tyvek® performance. The patented technology of Tyvek® FireCurb™ allows a fire classification up to Euroclass B, both for free-hanging application or for installation on mineral wools that most common, multi-layer breather membranes cannot guarantee.

Over the years, Tyvek® Building Envelope Solutions have earned numerous awards and recognition for innovation and performance from organizsations in all regions of the world.  Most recently:

·         Tyvek® and AirGuard®  products, which are in use in thousands of buildings in Europe to reduce energy losses, were recognizsed in 2017 for achieving the lowest air exchange readings ever measured by the Tyvek® Building Envelope Solutions have become the standard choice for quality builders around the world.  And there are many examples of famous buildings protected by Tyvek®, including:

·         The Westfield Olympic Retail Park and the Athletes Village at the London 2012 Olympic Games

Focus on the Future

When DuPont invented the building wrap category nearly 40 years ago, it was just the beginning. With an unwavering focus on the future, DuPont continues to be a leader in the industry by advancing building science and delivering innovative building envelope solutions to the industry.

DuPont is currently working with architects, builders and installers to continue to drive innovation for the next generation of new construction projects and future renovation of existing buildings to meet emerging needs.

Learn more about Tyvek® Building Envelope Solutions