Stone Panels Product Testing
The StoneLite® panel system and its installing components have been thoroughly tested by leading global independent testing laboratories. They are accepted by code officials in North America for unrestricted use as exterior cladding for Type 1 buildings and likewise are accepted throughout the majority of Europe. Summaries of test results are presented below. Copies of the original test reports are available upon request.
View our full-scale arena blast test video using Stone Panels’ products.
- Acid Freeze-Thaw Accelerated Aging by Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. Reference WJE Report No. 2005.2577 dated 26 September 2006
Flexural strength tests in accordance with ASTM C880 procedure and Tensile bond tests in general accordance with ASTM D897 procedure were conducted on both new and 19-year old StoneLite® specimens to measure strength, durability and performance characteristics. Tests were conducted on current production of Rosa Porrino granite, Indiana limestone, plus both new Roman Classic travertine and Roman Classic travertine that had been installed on the exterior of a building in the Chicago, IL area 19 years ago. The accelerated weathering consisted of exposing specimens to a cyclic temperature from -10 F to +170 F for 100 cycles while partially submerged in a 4-pH sulfuric acid solution to simulate acid rain. After 100 cycles of exposure StoneLite® granite lost 2.7% of ultimate load flexural strength, limestone lost 6.3%, new travertine lost 4.7%, and old travertine lost 3.7%. The strength of new travertine and 19-year old travertine was similar in the longitudinal orientation although the old travertine had lower strength in the transverse orientation. Tensile bond strength tests were not conclusive because most of the specimen failure was due to internal fracturing of the stone while the bond to honeycomb did not fail.
- Test on Freeze-Thaw and Flexure Testing. Reference SwRI Report No. 04-6751-124/141 dated 31 March 1995
White Carrara marble, Indiana limestone, Roman Classic travertine and Black Impala granite StoneLite® panels were subjected to an accelerated aging procedure of temperature cycling 100 times from +170 F to -10 F while the stone face, bond line and honeycomb were submerged in a 4-pH sulfuric acid solution. The exposed specimen and corresponding control samples were then subjected to one-quarter-point flexure loading, placing the stone and bond line in tension. There was no bond failure, which would have been considered possible due to the shear stress between the stone and the honeycomb. The StoneLite® panel flexure strength loss averaged only 13%, as compared with a loss of flexural strength in solid dimensional stones of 25% to 70% of their original strength. Wiss Janney Elstner Associates Engineers followed this testing with both accelerated aging and flexural tests.
- Test method developed in Europe, conducted by PARTEK in Finland. Reference PARTEK Report MATLAB 33/96 dated 15 Nov. 1996
StoneLite® White Carrara marble panels were subjected to 200 cycles of 4 pH acid rain, UV radiation exposure, and temperature variation from -30 C (-22 F) and 25 C (77 F). There was an average of less than 6% reduction in bond strength following the 200 cycles of exposure. As a result of this testing and two (2) years of additional investigation, the technical committee for Finlandia Hall in Helsinki approved the StoneLite® panel system for replacement of solid 4 cm dimensional stone slabs that had warped with many having fallen from the exterior walls.
- Freezing & thawing in water in accordance with ASTM C-67. Reference Ramtech Laboratories Report No. 8098A-87
StoneLite® panels were exposed to 100 cycles of freezing at 0 F for 20 hours, followed by thawing in water at a temperature of 75 F for 4 hours, then repeating the freezing and thawing procedure immersed in water. The average flatwise tension bond capacity was 290 psi (41,760-lbs per sq. ft.) following the 100 cycle test.
- Flatwise Tensile Strength Tests Performed on Limestone Panels in Accordance with ICBO Standard AC05 and ASTM C297. Ref. Terrapin Testing Inc. Project 50427.
Testing began with a 25 cycle, freeze-thaw exposure process on five of each type of limestone, Indiana and Stanton Moore. Each cycle as follows:(2) Hours @ -40°F;(2) Hours @ 70°F;(2) Hours @ 160°F;(1) Hour @ 0°F. Stress at failure for each Limestone was greater than 300 psi.
- Shear and flatwise tension bond tests were conducted in accordance with ICBO Test Standard AC05 for the purpose of evaluating the bonding adhesive. Reference Columbia Research & Testing Report ESR No. 99136.
Shear and flatwise tension bond tests were conducted after StoneLite® panels had been subjected to accelerated aging by submerging in water 48 hours, drying at 145 F for eight hours, followed by three cycles of soaking 16 hours and drying 8 hours. After aging, the average shear capacity increased from 914 psi to 948 psi (136,512 lbs. per sq. ft.), and the average flatwise tension capacity also increased from 309 psi to 337 psi (48,528 lbs. per sq. ft.)
Air and Water Infiltration
- Air infiltration in accordance with ASTM E 283-73 and water penetration in accordance with ASTM E 331-70. Reference Construction Consulting Laboratory Report Jan. 25-Feb. 1, 1988
A steel stud framed assembly measuring 8 ft. x 12 ft. was clad with StoneLite® travertine panels. The panels were attached with Dow Corning 795 structural silicone. Joints between the unfilled travertine (natural voids in the stone) were also sealed (caulked) with Dow Corning 795 structural silicone sealant. The StoneLite® assembly successfully passed air infiltration and water penetration tests both before and after thermal cycling temperatures between +180 F and -20 F. After passing the 30-psf-design load and 45-psf overload, the simulated negative wind load was taken to 180 psf (equal to 265 miles per hour).
- Air infiltration in accordance with ASTM E 283-73 and water penetration in accordance with ASTM E 331-70. Reference Construction Consulting Laboratory Report September & October 1988
A steel stud framed assembly measuring 9 ft. – 6 in. wide by 17 ft. high was clad with varying types and sizes of StoneLite® marble panels. These panels were attached with T-nut inserts bolted to connection clips and welded to the framing. The assembly successfully passed air infiltration and both static and dynamic water penetration tests before and after thermal cycling temperatures between +210 F and – 10 F. Structural testing was terminated at 88 psf simulated negative wind load when a clip connecting the steels stud framing to the test chamber twisted and failed. There was no panel failure.
- Addendum: April 22, 2008 we had Architectural Testing, Inc. (formerly HTL) conduct testing to renew our Miami-Dade certification. In this report in Section 6.1 Protocol TAS 202-94 Static Air Pressure, we have results for Air Infiltration and Water Penetration:
- Air @ 1.57psf (25mph) Results: 0.019 cfm/ft²
- Air @ 6.24psf (50mph) Results: 0.052 cfm/ft²
- Water Penetration: 15% of Positive design Pressure Results: 13.5psf Pass
Structural and Impact Load Tests
- Hurricane wind load and missile impact tests in accordance with Florida Building Codes TAS 201-94, TAS 202-94, TAS 203-94, and ASTM E330. Reference Architectural Testing Inc. API Report No. D5211.01-801-12
StoneLite® panels, attached 24-in. o.c. to steel stud frames, resisted numerous large missile impacts from 8 ft. long wood 2x4s traveling at over 50 ft. per second. There was an instantaneous deflection of the panel (sometimes exceeding 1 inch), but the StoneLite® panels were neither penetrated nor chipped. The StoneLite® panel assemblies also successfully withstood 1342 repetitions of positive-negative 90 psf design wind loading, followed by 135 psf (150% of design wind pressure). All test criteria was met and South Florida Code acceptance was obtained.
- Racking shear tests, simulating seismic loading, conducted in accordance with ASTM E-72. Reference Ramtech Laboratories Report No. 8063-87
Racking shear tests were conducted on StoneLite® panels attached to steel stud framing with epoxy-set threaded inserts bolt attached to clip angles. The 8-ft. x 8-ft. assemblies were loaded to over 5,000 lbs. producing deflections of 2-1/2 inches. There was no major chipping nor damage, no disengagement, and no bond loss. When loaded to failure, the connection clips distorted and there was connection clip weld failure on the back-up framing.
- Impact tests conducted in accordance with ASTM E-695. Reference Ramtech Laboratory Report No. 8125-87, dated 5 Oct. 1987
Impact tests were conducted on StoneLite® panels and also on 3-cm thickness solid granite for the purpose of comparing resistance to impact. All tests were conducted with panels or slabs spanning 42 inches. StoneLite® panels resisted 540 ft.-lbs. impact loading with only some fine surface cracking, no change in surface finish nor any other damage. This amount of impact was the maximum possible for the equipment in this laboratory. Unofficial testing on StoneLite® panels exceeded 3,600 ft.-lbs. impact without failure. By comparison, the 3-cm thick solid granite shattered into pieces as soon as impacted a load of 60 ft.-lbs.
- Flexure testing in accordance with ASTM E-72, plus Flatwise tension bond testing, to meet ICBO requirements. Reference Ramtech Laboratories Report No. 7619-85, and 7619B-85 dated 16 April 1986.
Flexure tests were conducted on StoneLite® panels 48 inches wide, and spans of 35.5 inches, 51.5 inches and 92.5 inches. In addition, StoneLite® panels were subjected to accelerated aging by rapid cycling of temperature for 2 hours at -40 F, 2 hours at 70 F, 2 hours at 160 F and 1 hour at 0 F, for 25 cycles.
- Attachment Plate Testing – Pullout, push through and lateral shear maximum loads were conducted by Terrapin Testing, Inc. Test report No. TT 506019-HJ dated December 4, 2008.
StoneLite® panels made of various prepreg sheets and aluminum honeycomb combinations were tested with Stone Panels Inc. proprietary attachment / embed plates installed in the panels. Tests were conducted per ASTM D1761.
Laminated sandwich panel and attachment plate tests were conducted by Terrapin Testing, Inc. – Test report No. TT 505019-ESF dated April 30, 2008.
Attachment System Testing & Miscellaneous
- Interlocking Channels (Narrow) installed over Rigid Insulation Board Load Testing. Reference Construction Consulting Laboratories Report No. CCLI-00-090
StoneLite® panels were installed with Interlocking Channels over 2 inch thick 25 psi compression strength rigid insulation board. The Interlocking Channels were screw attached through the insulation board and through the sheathing to steel stud-framing backup. The panels were gravity loaded to determine whether there might be rotation of the screws and whether the insulation board could resist resultant compression forces. There was no screw rotation and no deformation of the insulation board after applying a gravity load of 61 lbs. per sq. ft. (18 times the StoneLite® weight).
- Composite Panel Tests and Tranverse Load Testing in Accordance with ASTM E72. Reference Terrapin Testing Report No. TT 509004-001 dated 13 April 2009.
Full Scale testing of StoneLite® panels interlocking channel attachment system for positive and negative wind loading. Panels were subjected to lateral loads up to 201 psf positive loading and 190 psf negative loading. The stud frame back up consisted of vertical stud spacing at 24 inches on center.
- On August 15, 2012 Terrapin Testing conducted custom testing on two depths of aluminum channels used to attach our panels to a host structure.
These two configurations are commonly known as “Wide” and “Narrow” channels. Each specimen was 3.5” section engaged with mating channel, which was fixed to a 6” steel stud as it would be seen in the field. A negative force was applied to the 3.5” specimen to determine the maximum load strength.
- Narrow Channels: 695 lbs. per 3.5” specimen
- Wide Channels: 595 lbs. per 3.5” specimen
Building Code Approval & Quality Control Testing
- The following U.S. Building Code Authorities have approved StoneLite® Panels for Exterior Use on unlimited height construction:
- International Code Council Report ESR-1500. The ICC-ES was established from the prior four US code bodies (ICBO, NER, SBCCI & BOCA). Our prior ICBO report has been transferred to the ICC.
- City of Los Angeles – Research Report RR-24922
- City of New York – MEA 373-87-M
- Miami-Dade County NOA 11-1017.02 approved September 27, 2012, Expires January 9, 2017
- Southern Building Code Congress (SBCCI) Report No. 8799 – Original approval later amalgamated with ICBO & ICC.
- Quality Control Related Testing & Inspection Reports. Various tests by independent Laboratories and by Stone Panels, Inc. ® in-house testing, plus copies of U.S., British, & French Audit reports, including:
- ICC Audit Report conducted bi-anually.
- CSTB (Avis Technique) Surveillance Audit conducted annually
- BBA (British Board of Agreement) Surveillance Audit conducted bi-annually
- Plascore, Inc. QC testing for Salt Spray resistance of the Honeycomb core.
- Cytec Engineered Materials Certified Laboratories for Flatwise Tensile Testing of 1/500 of production panels for Q.C. purposes and the annual ICC tests.
- Stone Panels, Inc. Quality Assurance testing of Flatwise Tension, Attachment Plate Pullout and Potted Inserts conducted on two (2) samples per every 50 panels produced.
- Independent Laboratory Testing conducted four (4) times a year on Flatwise Tension and Potted Insert samples.
- Independent Laboratory Testing conducted eight (8) times a year on Honeycomb Core Assembly samples with and without Attachment Plates.
French Building Code Approval & CSTB Tests
- French Building Code Approval, Reference Avis Technique No 2/13-1568 Approval of Granite, Marble and standard Limestone. Extensive testing listed below undertaken and product approval was achieved in 1998 and renewals are current.
- The following tests carried out by the CSTB (Centre Scientifique et Technique du Batiment) to investigate StoneLite® panels for their suitability for the above code approval, both copies of the original test reports in French and the English translations are available upon request:
- CL98-068 – Thermal Shock testing with cycles of high radiant temperature followed by cold-water spray.
- CL98-072 – Combination of Fatigue cycles and sudden negative pressure up to the limits of the test apparatus.
- CL98-074 – Accelerated Aging (Freeze -Thaw) followed by flatwise tensile testing. Virtually all resulted in cohesive failure in the stone itself.
- CL98-075 – Hydrothermal (humidity cycling) followed by flatwise tensile testing. Virtually all resulted in cohesive failure in the stone itself or the test rig.
- CL98-076 – Impact testing. Soft bag weights had no effect, a few chips occurred from steel balls being dropped. Note such forces would shatter dimensional stone.
- CL98-096 – Thermal Cycling on large panels with attachments. Cycling also included simulated rain.
- A full-scale multi-story fire evaluation was conducted in accordance with UBC Standard No. 17-6. Reference Southwest Research Institute Report No. 01-1274
A two-story structure, approximately 17 ft. by 17 ft., with a floor-to-floor height of 12 ft. was clad with StoneLite® panels. The structure had a 4 ft. high by 8 ft. long window on one of elevation of the first floor. A calibrated crib of dried wood weighing 1,285 lbs., located near the window opening, was ignited by kerosene poured over the crib in addition to pans of kerosene under the crib. Temperatures inside the building reached 2,000 F. StoneLite® panels on the exterior surface were exposed to temperatures exceeding 1,200 F and the temperature in the aluminum honeycomb core reached 715 F. After 30 minutes of exposure, only small chips of the stone veneer had dislodged. The stone had cracked and was charred up to an elevation of 17 ft. in the area exposed to intense fire. The assembly resisted vertical spread of flame for the duration of the test. There was no flame propagation through the honeycomb core and no flame propagation to adjacent lateral spaces. Temperatures measured 1-inch from the interior surface, within the second story, did not exceed 130 F. The StoneLite® wall panel system met all criteria.
- A modified ASTM E-108 fire test was conducted on a 6 ft. by 10 ft. assembly clad with StoneLite® panels. Reference Southwest Research Institute Report Report No. 01-2602- 218
StoneLite® panels were attached with epoxy-set inserts, bolt attached to angle clips, which in turn were welded to steel stud framing. The assembly was subjected to furnace temperatures exceeding 1,500 F, and the exposed stone surface temperature reached 1,199 F during the 30 minutes duration. All StoneLite® panels remained in place and intact. The assembly met all required criteria.
- Flame spread and combustion determined by the Standard Method of Test for Surface Burning Characteristics of Building Materials, conducted in accordance with ASTM E 84.
The results were: Flame Spread Index = 5, Smoke Developed = 5 and Fuel Contributed = 0. As a result, the panels meet Class A or Class I requirements.
- Fire propagation tests were conducted in accordance with BS 476: Part 6: 1989+A1:2009 and BS 476: Part 7: 1997.
Reference BRE Global Report No. 276589 & 276249
The results qualify StoneLite® for a Class 1 flame spread classification. StoneLite® was also defined as Class “0″ for fuel contribution. Both achieving the highest classification.
- Tests to measure ignitability, spread of flame, heat evolved and smoke developed were conducted in Melbourne, Australia. Reference AW TA Textile Testing Report No. 7-422502-FV
All indexes were below the range of 0 to 10 qualifying StoneLite® panels for the highest rating.
- Evaluation of the Acute Inhalation Toxicity tests were conducted according to University of Pittsburgh Test Method. Reference Southwest Research Institute Report No. 01-8818-705
It was concluded that StoneLite® panels are “no more toxic than wood (Douglas Fir)”.
- Potential heat of combustion tests were conducted in accordance with ASTM D-2015 and UBC Standard No. 17-2. Reference United States Testing Company Report No. LA64184
The potential heat of StoneLite® panels is 1150 BTU per pound according to these criteria.
- A fire spread test was conducted in accordance with BS 8414-2: 2005. A Test and classification of fire performance report in accordance with BR 135: Annex B:2007.
The report defines the classification assigned to the Stone Panels StoneLite® system when fitted to a lightweight steel frame in accordance with the procedures given in DG 501- BR135:Annex B. (External fire spread, internal fire spread and system burn through results were all compliant).
- Flame spread and combustion determined by the Standard Method of Test for Surface Burning Characteristics of Building Materials, conducted in accordance with ASTM E 84 – 08A (NFPA 255, ANSI/UL 723 & UBC 8-1).
The test was conducted using a limestone surface veneer and the results were: Flame Spread Index = 0 and Smoke Developed = 0. As a result, the panels meet Class A requirements (limits
- French fire test conducted by “CENTRE SCIENTIFIQUE ET TECHNIQUE DU BATIMENT” according to CSTB-Department Securite Structures Et Feu.
This report (No. RA11-0049) determined the fire rating achieved by the StoneLite®composite panel as M1 classification for granite, limestone and marble stone veneer, thus complying with all regulatory provisions.
- A test to determine the flammability characteristics of exterior, non-load bearing wall assemblies in accordance with The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 285 was conducted as SwRI Project No. 01.19577.01.610. The test method is to simulate the “full scale” fire performance of the StoneLite® panel. The primary performance characteristics evaluated in this test are the capability of the test wall assembly to resist the following: 1) Flame propagation over the exterior face of the system. 2) Vertical flame spread within the combustible core components from one story to the next. 3) Vertical flame spread over the interior (room side) surface of the panels from one story to the next. 4) Lateral flame spread from the compartment of fire origin to adjacent spaces. The test shows the wall assembly of StoneLite® stone panels met the acceptance criteria state in the NFPA 285 standard. Based on the successful testing alternative wall constructions were developed to support their use in an exterior wall assembly which will continue to meet the conditions of acceptance of NFPA 285.
Test of Time
The first notable exterior cladding project in the United States was a five-story office building in Dallas completed in 1980. Of course, the ultimate test of any product is The Test of Time and StoneLite® has proven performance on building exteriors throughout the world for over 37 years. From Montreal, Quebec to Miami, Anchorage to San Diego, London to Seoul and Moscow to Toronto, StoneLite® adorns some of the finest commercial buildings in the world.
A partial list of completed exterior projects and project profiles may be found in the StoneLite® Specifications Binder and on the Stone Panels, Inc. website at stonepanels.com.
The Stone Panels, Inc. quality control program includes cutting samples of epoxy saturated glass cloth from every production run for future evaluation. Those samples have been retained from the date of initial production. In addition, two (2) samples are cut from randomly selected panels out of every 25-panel production run for flatwise bond and epoxy-set insert testing.
For additional quality control, there are unannounced inspections and review of records by a Quality Control Inspector for the International Code Council four (4) times each year for the United States. Inspections and audit are also conducted by the CSTB group of building officials for the Avis Technique, the evaluation for French approval and by the BBA for the United Kingdom.
For more information on testing of our StoneLite® panels, please contact our Technical Services Staff.
Full Scale Arena Blast Test
StoneLite® stone panels provided a High Level of Protection per the Unified Facilities Criteria for the tested blast loads. Reference HTL Report No. T053-0902-09-4PSI-ILC and HTL Report No. T053-0902-09-8PSI-ILC.
Full Scale French Seismic Testing
StoneLite® stone panels subjected to various seismic test loadings consisting of Bati Parallelogramme’, ‘Bati Sismique Excitation’, and ‘Bati Perpendiculaire’ onan area of panels 3048 mm x 3048 mm. Reference ‘Centre Scientifique Et TechniqueDu Batiment’ Report No. EEM 09 26022051-1 as conducted per guidelines of CSTB.
- Requirement A1: Loading
- Requirement B2: Internal Fire Spread
- Requirement B4(1): External Fire Spread
- Requirement C2(b)(c): Resistance to Moisture
- Requirement Regulation 7: Materials and Workmanship
European Technical Approvals- BBA
- The Building (Scotland) Regulations
- The Building (Northern Ireland) Regulations
- Construction (Design and Management) Regulations