An insulation blanket is composed of three main layers: An inner face, the insulation media itself, and the outer fabric. The inner face, known as the hot face, comes in direct contact with the hot component. Typically a stainless steel mesh, it holds the insulation in place. The outer fabric, known as the cold face, covers the insulation.
Outer fabric can be fluid-resistant or non-fluid resistant. Silicone or Teflon™ lamination endows the fabric with fluid-resistant properties, greater abrasion resistance, and the ability to withstand greater amounts of mechanical stress. Additionally, these types of fabrics are well suited to surviving the elements.
However, once temperatures reach above 500° F, the adhesives and coatings begin to break down, causing the material to lose integrity and become brittle. Some fabrics can continue to perform up to 600° F, at which point laminated fabrics maintain integrity while losing lamination. For extremely high-temperature applications, non-fluid resistant, woven, non-coated fabrics fare well. For applications that require fluid-resistance as well as high-temperature resistance, other materials must be considered.
Curious about what kind of outer fabric is right for your particular application? Read more to find out what other options are available.