I - Technical Dictionary

ISO Standards                                            Standards established by the International Standards Organization to unify worldwide product standards and testing methods for materials.

Impact Isolation                                         Impact isolation is the ability of a material or construction to stop noise generated by impacts. The reduction of impact noise normally requires a decoupled or isolated construction such as a floating floor or discontinuous wall.

Impact Noise                                             Impact noise is caused by impact or collision on the walls or floor of an adjoining room. Typical sources of impact noise are footsteps on the floor above a residence, washing machines and dryers that are incorrectly mounted to a wall and slamming doors on cupboards mounted on a common wall.

Impact Sound                                           
A sound is caused by an object hitting a wall or floor.

Imperial                                                     The British Imperial System of weights and measures.

Impervious                                                A material that is or is made to be resistant to wet substances penetrating its surface in any way.

Implied Warranty                                       A promise arising by operation of the law, that something which is sold shall be merchantable and fit for the purpose for which the seller has reason to know that it is required.

Impressionism                                           Late 19th-century French school dedicated to defining transitory visual impressions painted directly from nature, with light and color of primary importance. If the atmosphere changed, a totally different picture would emerge. It was not the object or event that counted but the visual impression as caught at a certain time of day under a certain light. Claude Monet and Camille Pissarro were leaders of the movement.

Indemnification                                          A contractual obligation by which one person or entity agrees to reimburse others for loss or damage arising from specified liabilities.

Industry Standards                                    An agreement within a specific private sector industry on material or product usage, details as to use, recommendations as to application.

Inert Waste                                                Waste unlikely to undergo significant transformations and, therefore, should not release significant quantities of greenhouse gases or leachates contaminated with nutrients and/or chemicals.

Inertia                                                        The tendency of an object at rest to remain at rest, and of an object in motion to remain in motion.

Ingle-Nook                                                 A room recess, usually with a built-in seat and an open fire.

Inlay                                                           A decorative technique in which different colored woods or exotic materials, such as mother-of-pearl, ivory, and bone are pierced into the solid wood surface or veneer of a piece of furniture.

Insect Screen Door                                   Door that allows air to flow through but prevents the entry of insect pests.

Installation                                                 Erection and fixing of window frame on site.

Installation Drawing                                  Drawing showing the general configuration of an item and gives the necessary information to install the item relative to its mating structures and associated items.


Any material high in resistance to heat transmission that, when placed in the walls, ceiling, or floors of a structure, and will reduce the rate of heat flow.
The Following are Types of Insulation
  • Bulk Insulation - Bulk insulation contains millions of tiny pockets of still air trapped within the material. This air provides the material’s insulating effect so it is important not to compress bulk insulation. Bulk insulation is available as batts, blankets and boards, or as loose fill which is pumped, blown or placed by hand into an area.
  • Glasswool - Made from melted glass spun into a flexible mat of fine fibres. Available as batts or blankets. Easy to cut and install. Commonly sold in DIY packs with R values clearly labelled. Should not be compressed or moistened. All ends and edges should be butted together firmly during installation. Blankets are manufactured in rolls for specific types of installations, e.g. under roofing in a cathedral or raked ceiling or under a flat roof. Blankets are thinner and denser than batts, and are available with reflective foil attached to one side.
  • Rockwool - Made from volcanic rock melted at high temperatures and spun into a mat of fine fibres. Available as batts or blankets. Denser than Glasswool, so R value per unit thickness is higher. Better sound absorption qualities than Glasswool. Generally more expensive than Glasswool. Other characteristics are similar to Glasswool. Glasswool and rockwool are together referred to as ‘mineral wool’ products. Due to their potential to irritate the skin and the upper respiratory tract, full protective clothing, including gloves and a face mask, should be worn during installation.
  • Natural Wool - Made from sheep’s wool formed into batts or blankets. Should only be manufactured from new, scoured wool treated with a vermin and rot-proofing agent during the scouring process. Moth-proofing of wool is vital—check with the manufacturer for test results to guarantee this(test results should not be more than four months old). Most batts and blankets are made of a wool-polyester blend to reduce settling and compression. Naturally flame-resistant, however, the addition of synthetic fibres increases flammability—check with supplier for fire resistance testing results. As different types of wool can provide different R values for the same thickness, check with the supplier for R value tests and certifications.
  • Polyester - Made from polyester fibres spun into a flexible mat. Available as batts or blankets. Similar physical properties to mineral wool, but is non-irritable, with no known physical or health hazards. Does not burn, but will melt if exposed to a direct flame at high temperature.
  • Loose-Fill Insulation - This type of insulation consists of shredded or granulated material supplied in a loose form, and is usually installed by the supplier/manufacturer. It must be correctly installed at even depth to provide adequate insulation cover. Barriers should be installed to prevent insulation falling down through exhaust fans, wall cavities, ceiling vents and light fittings. Loose-fill material may settle over time, reducing its effectiveness—your contractor should quote you a guaranteed ‘settled R value’, which is the final R value achieved after any settling has occurred. This type of insulation is more suited to flat or shallowly-sloping ceilings of less than 25° pitch. With the exception of some Rockwool products, loose-fill is only suitable for insulating ceilings.
  • Cellulose Fibre - Made from waste paper pulverised into fine fluff. Must be treated with fire retardant chemicals to reduce flammability. Cheaper to purchase and install than other types of bulk insulation. Quality and installation can vary greatly, so ensure the product complies with Australian Standard AS2462 (1981): Cellulosic fibre thermal insulation.
  • Natural Wool - Natural sheep’s wool off-cuts. Should consist of pure, new, scoured wool only—should not contain any synthetic fibres, or dyed or recycled materials. Cheaper grades of wool are commonly used and can include small leather fragments—this should not affect performance. Should be treated with a vermin and rot-proofing agent during the scouring process. Other characteristics are similar to natural wool batts and blankets.
  • Granulated Rockwool - A loose-fill form of Rockwool. If treated with a water-repellent agent, can sometimes be used to fill cavity brick and brick veneer walls—check with the supplier to see if it is suitable.
  • Boards - These are used mainly in walls and cathedral ceilings.
  • Extruded Polystyrene - Rigid, waterproof boards of closed cell polystyrene. High compressive strength. Contain flame-retardants, however, installations only recommended between non-combustible surfaces. (e.g. plasterboard, reflective foil or brickwork). Very high R value per unit thickness. Generally more expensive than other types of bulk insulation. Some products available with reflective foil backing.
  • Foil-Faced Expanded Polystyrene - Rigid boards of polystyrene beads with reflective foil attached to both sides. Should be installed with foil facing still airspaces of at least 25 mm width to maximise R value. Expanded polystyrene has lower R value per unit thickness than extruded polystyrene. Also available as boards without foil facing—these have similar properties to extruded polystyrene, but have lower compressive strength and are not water-resistant.
  • Reflective Insulation - Reflective insulation is made of thin sheets of highly reflective aluminium foil laminate, which reflects heat from its polished surfaces while absorbing and emitting only a small amount. It must work in conjunction with a still air layer for maximum effectiveness. An R value supplied by reflective foil insulation is equivalent to the same R value provided by bulk insulation. Reflective foil R values are influenced by the characteristics of adjacent air spaces, such as their orientation, thickness and temperature differences. Adequate performance can be achieved by combining reflective insulation with bulk insulation and/or using specialist foil products, provided they are carefully installed. Any gaps or tears will significantly reduce performance, as will dust build-up on surfaces. Four types of reflective insulation products are currently available.
  • Reflective Foil Laminate - Foil laminated to paper with glass fibre reinforcement. Supplied in rolls. Typically used as roof sarking and wall insulation. Double-sided foil is more effective than single-sided, provided that both sides face a still airspace; it is also more water resistant. Double-sided foil is typically produced with an anti-glare coating—this reduces the insulation’s effectiveness by around 10%. 
  • Multi-Cell Reflective Foil Products - Two, three or four layers of laminated foil separated by partitioning to provide a one, two or three-layered cell structure. Can be installed over ceiling joists and between or across wall studs, depending on the product. Should be butted firmly together to prevent air movement through gaps. R value depends on the number of cells and the presence of still air layers between the batts and other materials.
  • Expandable Concertina-Style Foil - Double-sided reflective foil formed into an expandable concertina > Used mainly under timber floors and between wall studs. Adjustable width to suit varying gaps. Should be installed with an adjacent sealed airspace and be well sealed against the building frame.
  • Foil Bonded to Bulk Insulation - Reflective foil bonded to batts, blankets or polystyrene boards. Increases insulation benefits if installed with the foil facing a still air space. Blankets are a common method of insulating cathedral ceilings and under flat roofs.

Insurance Types                                      
Insurance types common to construction are:
  • All-Risks insurance (a relatively all-inclusive type of policy - not identifying specific perils],
  • Comprehensive General Liability insurance,
  • Deductible - All-Risks Course of Construction insurance,
  • Deductible Comprehensive General Liability insurance,
  • Automobile Liability Insurance,
  • Aircraft and Watercraft Liability Insurance,
  • Boiler and Machinery Insurance,
  • Contractor's Equipment Insurance.

This is an Italian term for an elaborate pictorial type of marquetry. It was often used for decorative panelling on furniture in Renaissance Italy.

A value which has a whole number component only eg. 1, 222, 6348 etc.

A structural building sense, the word most appropriate from the dictionary would be “soundness”.

A movement that began to re-establish the role of the artist in an artwork. Intentists believe that all meaning is the outworking of intention.

Interior Decoration Drawing                      
Drawing which shows furnishing plans, assembly, component range and details for loose and fixed fittings and which is normally drawn by an interior designer.

Internal Glazed                                          
Glass glazed from the inside of the window.

Ionic order                                                 
The classical order of architecture characterized by a capital with large volutes; less heavy than the Doric and less elaborate than the Corinthian.

Isolation Joint                                            
A separation between adjoining similar or dissimilar elements of a concrete structure, usually a vertical plane. Its purpose is to prevent movements of the individual parts from causing cracks in the concrete. Sometimes called an expansion joint.

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