Insulated Metal Panels and the Protective Barrier Concept

How IMPs fulfill multiple roles in the building envelope, providing thermal, air, water and vapor protection
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Live webinar airing on September 13, 2022 at 2:00 PM EDT
Sponsored by Metal Construction Association
Presented by Tyrone Marshall, Eric Li, Amanda Karns

Learning Objectives:

  1. Describe how the featured projects incorporated insulated metal panels to achieve a high level of thermal and moisture protection, including ways in which increased insulation and reduced air leakage delivered by an IMP ensure a protected building envelope that is built for long-term success.
  2. Discuss the numerous performance benefits of IMPs, which are designed as a factory-manufactured system to deliver a water, vapor, air and thermal barrier within one panel that can be installed all at one time.
  3. Explain the importance of correct fastening and sealing of IMP systems in order to maintain impermeability to the elements.
  4. Discuss how IMPs support a comfortable interior for occupants without thermal energy loss and moisture penetration.


AAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
AAPEI 1 Structured Learning Hour
MAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA.
This course can be self-reported to the NSAA
NWTAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
OAA 1 Learning Hour
SAA 1 Hour of Core Learning
This course can be self-reported to the AIBC, as per their CE Guidelines.
This course is approved as a Structured Course
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
Approved for structured learning
Approved for Core Learning
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA.
Course may qualify for Learning Hours with NWTAA
Course eligible for OAA Learning Hours
This course is approved as a core course
This course can be self-reported for Learning Units to the Architectural Institute of British Columbia

This webinar is part of the Metal Architecture Academy

The buildings of today must satisfy a supreme standard; they are called upon to achieve high performance: to be resilient, healthy, and energy efficient. Building science has given us a focused modern design emphasis on the building envelope in response to the movement of thermal, air, water, and vapor conditions. These demands elicit dramatic changes to building envelope designs and the components used within. This course will examine the benefits of insulated metal panels and how advancements in IMP systems provide a safe and economical edge when it comes to the protective “4+” barrier concept, meeting the demands of long-lasting high-performing buildings, energy efficiency, and occupant comfort combined with versatile aesthetic options.

To illustrate the barrier concept, two of our esteemed panelists will present cutting-edge projects that feature insulated metal panels. We will also delve into ways in which IMPs can support high-performance building goals.

Tyrone Marshall of Perkins+Will will focus on Providence Tarzana Medical Center in Los Angeles, California, a design study focused on the sub-assembly components of a rainscreen attachment through exterior insulation and cold-formed metal frame. His presentation will help us understand the dew point and U-factor for four different options based on research and consolidation of multiple pieces of criteria such as technical details, patient room interior design criteria, and material properties for physical and thermal characteristics.

TVA Architects’ Eric Li will present the Drivers Club, located in Portland, Washington. The Drivers Club was conceived as a facility that would create a community of users who share a passion for high-performance cars. The facility fundamentally needed to be a secure place for members’ rare and exotic vehicles, while still being open and inviting to allow for a wide range of interactions, from informal gatherings to special events. It was essential for the project to reach a design level that is worthy of the vehicles it houses while simultaneously adhering to the strict budgetary parameters of a start-up business.

This project is truly a metal building, from the structure to the skin and even to the purely architectural elements of the corrugated overlay panels that give rhythm and depth to the street-facing façade. The pre-engineered building system was carefully considered in all aspects by the architectural team as well as from SPAN Construction, the erector/ installer, to ensure that the building was clean, efficient, and coordinated—the perfect backdrop to a gallery-like presentation of members’ prized possessions. The insulated panels, which are the primary building envelope material (other than glass), were patterned using the manufacturer’s standard panel sizes, and the design team shifted the color, sheen, and texture on the panels on the largest parts of the building to create an elegant striping effect that changes as you move around the building and see the panels from different orientations.

Finally, Amanda (Mandi) Karns will bring her vast industry expertise to provide a detailed overview of insulated metal panels, including how they are made and their many benefits—from speed of installation to energy-savings, air and water barriers, and endless design possibilities.

Drivers Club

Photo courtesy of TVA Architects

Tyrone Marshall, AIA, NOMA, LEED AP BD+C, is Sr. Computational Designer, Associate for Perkins+Will. Tyrone leads with expertise in architectural design, computational design, building science, and performance design. He provides architectural project design guidance related to the creation of buildings for energy consumption, building envelope and performance detailing, energy cost, life-cycle cost, carbon emissions, and footprints.

Amanda (Mandi) Karns, is Director, Project Services for Kingspan Insulated Panels. Mandi has 20 years in the building industry, including 10 years of insulated metal panels’ experience. Currently leading the Project Services team at Kingspan, Mandi has held a variety of technical positions from drafting to engineering to managing technical teams as well as facades program management. With vast knowledge in product and sales engineering solutions, Mandi provides conceptual thinking, problem solving and unparalleled customer support on design assist and value engineered projects, including many high end architectural and façade projects in the marketplace. She earned a Bachelor of Science design in Civil Engineering in Technology from Point Park University and is Lean Six-Sigma certified. She currently holds the Chair position on the IMP Alliance Technical Committee of the Metal Construction Association (MCA).

Eric Li, is a Senior Associate with TVA Architects in Portland, Oregon. Since joining TVA in 1997, he has specialized in designing and detailing complex exterior envelope systems. In addition to managing the Drivers Club, Eric’s experience includes the Fox Tower in Portland, the Ford Alumni Center at the University of Oregon, and a number of long-span industrial buildings.


Metal Construction Association The Metal Construction Association brings together a diverse industry for the purpose of expanding the use of metal in construction through marketing, research, technology, and education. MCA member companies gain tremendous benefit from association activities that focus on research, codes and standards, market development, and technical programs.


Originally published in September 2022