Research Project Information

Research Project Summary Information

Energy-Efficient Improvements to Thermal-krete Panels(ST6470-1)

Steven Winter Associates, Inc.


Precast concrete foundation wall systems have been used in residential construction for 20 years. Tec-Kon Enterprises, LCC of Lockport, NY is a manufacturer of one system marketed by Kistner Concrete Products, Inc. as Thermal-Krete panels. Tec-Kon Enterprises has succeeded in licensing the manufacture of this system to three producers outside of New York State. These systems offer builders and homeowners several benefits compared to traditional poured-in-place or concrete block foundations. However, precast foundation systems have only a small share of the residential construction market. This small market share is attributable to difficulties in attaching structural beams to the walls, suboptimal methods for insulating the walls, and perceived high first cost of the walls. Steven Winter Associates and Tec-Kon Enterprises have worked together in using this wall system for the Build America program. From this working relationship, Steven Winter Associates and Kistner believe they can identify strategies for improving the performance of this building concept.

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Project Description

The Contractor will: (1) Identify and evaluate potential concepts for improving the wall's performance (2) Test the most promising concepts with small prototype wall panels (3) Use the results of tests to select and refine the concepts for the final wall systems' design (4) Build and test full-size prototypes incorporating the final concepts (5) Implement the developed concepts into Tec-Kon's production line, and (6) Publish and distribute technical bulletins and marketing brochures highlighting the benefits of the improved wall system.


The performance of the Thermal-krete wall system can exceed that of conventional wall systems by a factor of more than two. This building concept is more resource-efficient than competing approaches because it requires fewer materials. If market acceptance of this product increased, employment would increase at a New York manufacturing facility.

Project Results

Tec-Kon gained significant knowledge from this work to improve its wall system and the methods used for its fabrication. Nevertheless, Tec Kon Enterprises LLC chose not to adopt any of the improvements strategies, citing competitive cost and procurement issues.


Steven Winter Associates, Inc.
61 Washington St
Norwalk, CT 06854

Principle Investigator

Ric Guilbert

Universities Involved


Project Type:

Product Development

Technologies Types:

Building Systems

NYSERDA Contact Information

Robert Carver


R&D - Buildings Research

Contract Details

Start Date: 1/11/2010
Project Status: Active
Contract Number: ST6470-1

Last Updated: 2/4/2014 1