Not sure what that means? Get definitions here.

Technical Information
CAD/REVIT/SketchUp Files
Build a Specification
Build a Submittal
Data Pages
Product Literature
Warranties Seismic Solutions FAQs
Continuing Education
Mobile Apps
Quick Links:
Acoustical Performance Terms
Application Standards
Fire Performance Terms
General Terms
Light Reflectance Terms
Suspension System Terms

General Terms

Access Tile – A removable acoustical tile with special kerfing details.

American National Standards Institute (ANSI)
– An independent organization of trade associations, technical societies, professional groups and consumer organizations, formerly known as the United States of America Standards Institute (USASI or ASI) and previously as the American Standards Association (ASA).

American Society for Testing and Materials
– A nonprofit organization that establishes standard tests and specifications for construction materials; such tests and specifications usually are referred to by the abbreviation ASTM followed by a numerical designation.

– Building Officials and Code Administrators. Publishes the National Building Code every three years, with yearly supplements. Most commonly referred to in the northeast states.

Backloaded Insulation
– Thermal/acoustical insulation placed above the ceiling suspension system, laid across the horizontal grid members above the acoustical panels or tile. Also referred to as "backloading."

Bevel Edge
– An acoustical tile is considered bevel edge material when the face of the tile turns up at the edge at approximately 45° for 1/8″ to 1/4″ around the perimeter of the tile.

– Added feature of HumiGuard Plus ceilings; a fungicide treatment to inhibit or retard growth of mold or mildew on product’s painted surfaces.

Border Cu
t – Cut made on both ceiling panel and grid at the perimeter of the installation.

Clean Room
– An assembly room for precision products whose quality would be affected by dust, lint or airborne pathogens; usually has smooth room surfaces to prevent dust collection; air precipitators or filters keep dust, lint, etc., to a specified minimum level.

Demountable Partition, Relocatable Partition
– A nonload-bearing partition of dry construction assembled from prefabricated components which can be installed, removed, and then reinstalled at a different location; may be full height, from floor to ceiling, or partial height.

Fiberglass Panels
– Processed from a molten state into fibrous glass strands, then formed into board stock. The manufacturing process requires a separate dimensionally stable facing material laminated to the fiberglass core to provide texture and pattern. Fiberglass, vinyl and polyester facings are typically used.

– Method of imparting a set of ragged depressions into the face of acoustical tile or panels during manufacture for appearance and acoustical performance.

– The average illumination resulting when one lumen of light falls on one square foot of surface. Total lumens on surface divided by area of surface equals footcandles.

– Organization based in Sacramento, California, that sets seismic standards primarily for the western United States. Publishes the Uniform Building Code.

Impact Resistance
– In certain applications, such as gymnasiums, locker rooms, classrooms, corridors and institutional settings, acoustical ceiling assemblies may be subjected to impact from objects. Impact resistant assemblies with acoustical lay-in panels typically require retention clips to keep panels in place upon direct impact.

– Groove in the edge of ceiling tile which accommodates and hides a suspension member.

– Kerfed two sides, cut two sides.

– Kerfed and cut on all four sides.

Mineral Wool
– A man-made wool-like material of fine inorganic fibers made from slag, used as loose fill or formed into blanket, batt, block, board or slab shapes for thermal and acoustical insulation.

– Any lay-in acoustical board that is designed for use with an exposed mounting system.

– A dividing wall within a building; may be load-bearing or nonload-bearing. In sound transmission considerations, any building component (or a combination of components), such as a wall, door, window, roof or floor-ceiling assembly, that separates one space from another.

Perimeter Trim
– Components of right angle shape, either simple or compound (stepped) bends, set at the suspension grid perimeter, flush to the abutting vertical surface.

– In suspended ceiling construction, the space between the suspended ceiling and the main structure above.

R Factor
– A number measuring a material’s resistance to heat flow. R stands for resistance, the inverse of conductivity. Values reported in this catalog were determined by the ASTM C 518 test method. Values are reported at a mean temperature of 75° F (24° C), and as the inverse of BTU/hr • sf • °F (imperial units), and Watts/m2 • °C (metric units).

– Process of cutting grooves into the face of acoustical panels creating a different geometric visual with decorative and some acoustical benefit. Scoring often mimics the suspension grid, camouflaging it and making 2′ x 2′ and 2′ x 4′ panels look like 12″ x 12″ tile.

– For applications where cleanliness is a priority, acoustical units may require cleaning beyond normal maintenance procedures. Acoustical panels with special facing materials such as Mylar or vinyl film offer superior scrubbability without compromising panel finish integrity. Metal ceilings may also be used for scrubbable applications. The accepted test procedure is the Scrubbability Test ASTM D 2486.

Seismic Load
– The force produced on a structural mass owing to its acceleration, induced by an earthquake.

Square Edge
– Edge design for acoustical panels which, when viewed in profile, forms a rectangle. Though they are the simplest and least expensive to manufacture, square-cut acoustical panels do the least to hide the suspension grid.

– A functional edge detail. Tegular suspended ceiling panels have a rabbeted/reveal edge design that allows them to extend below the supporting grid, making the grid less conspicuous.

Temperature and Relative Humidity (RH) Resistance
– Temperature and humidity affect acoustical panel and tile dimensional and planar stability. Standard acoustical panels and tiles are designed for installation within the normal occupancy condition range of 15 to 29 °C (60 to 85 °F) and maximum 70 percent RH. When the in-service use temperature and RH are expected to exceed these ranges, consider the use of acoustical units specifically designed for these applications, like HumiGuard ceilings. Anticipate lower overlaid thermal/ acoustic insulation (commonly referred to as "backloading") limits for these designs.

Thermal Resistance
– Where thermal resistance is required for an acoustical ceiling assembly, provide adequate ventilation to avoid high humidity conditions in the ceiling plenum that could damage assembly components. Thermal insulation above the ceiling plane may place the dew point within the ceiling plenum, increasing the potential for damage to ceiling components due to condensation. When in doubt, consult a professional engineer for venting recommendations. Note: Thermal insulation overlaid on the back of suspended ceilings may cause panel deflection and limit access to the ceiling plenum. Verify limitations with manufacturer. Caution: Most tested fire-resistance-rated acoustical ceiling assemblies prohibit the use of overlaid insulation. Adding this component runs the risk of voiding acceptability of the tested assembly.

– Acoustical ceiling board, usually 12″ x 12″, which is stapled, cemented or suspended by a concealed grid system. Edges are often kerfed and cut back.

UBC 25-2
– Uniform Building Code (seismic standard).

UL Label
– An identification affixed to a building material or component, with the authorization of Underwriters’ Laboratories, Inc., indicating that the labeled product: (a) has a rating based on the performance tests of such products; (b) is from a production lot found by examination to be made from materials and by processes essentially identical to those of representative products which have been subjected to appropriate fire, electrical hazard, or other tests for safety; and (c) is subject to the reexamination service of UL.

– Underwriters’ Laboratories, Inc.

Vector Edge
– An edge design that provides downward accessibility. The Vector edge detail provides a thin 1/4″ reveal resulting in a clean upscale visual.

– For applications where cleanliness is important, acoustical units may require cleaning beyond normal maintenance procedures. Acoustical panels with special surfaces such as DUNE, ULTIMA, OPTIMA® and VPO coatings offer superior wash resistance without compromising panel finish integrity. The accepted test procedure is the Washability Test ASTM D 4828.

– Wireless Fidelity. Name and logo provided by the Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance (WECA) to wireless system providers whose access points meet the 802.11b standard.


Please provide a properly formatted email address. (example:
My Armstrong | View Cart
Change Country | Français Canada