Detention Steel Wall Panels

Detention steel wall panels are a system of highly secure wall construction with high impact and crush resistance. Detention steel wall panel systems are typically used in correctional facilities such as prisons and jails, but can also be used in any high security application to prevent burglar entry or to protect from terrorist threats.

Detention Steel Wall Panel Manufacturers

  • Trussbilt is a leading innovator and manufacturer of security steel wall panels for commercial and correctional facility use. Their TrussWall technology provides a cost effective security solution with greater strength and significantly less space than traditional precast concrete solutions.

Standards for Steel Wall Panels

Within the detention and security industries, walls and steel wall panels are rated in a number of different tests, and most detention facilities have minimum industry standards requirements that building materials must pass to be used in construction. These standards are typically are a pass/fail, though some have ratings associated with them. Typical performance standards for detention steel wall panels include:

  • Impact (ASTM F2322): “Physical assault on vertical fixed barriers for detention and correctional facilities.” This test is a measure of a vertical fixed barrier (wall) against sustained human violence in the form of battering rams or make-shift rams such as benches and/or bunks. If a wall or steel wall panel passes this test, it can withstand sustained attempts to batter it down.
  • Wall Delamination: Delamination is the breakdown and failure of composite materials, where the layers separate resulting in a loss of mechanical toughness. The term is common in reinforced concrete where the metal can oxidize to have a greater volume than the original metal, and thus requires more space than the original reinforced bar or rebar.
  • Acoustical (ASTM E90 & E1332): This standard rates the sound transmission loss from a given medium. Particularly important in prisons and other detention facilities where a very large population is living in close quarters, it’s desirable to have significant sound dampening within the structure. Interestingly, detention steel wall panels actually have the same STC (sound transmission class) rating as an 8″ block wall, as well as meeting all ASTM requirements.
  • Bullet Resistance (UL752): As the name suggests, this standard measures the bullet resistance of a detention steel wall panel system. In this standard, bullet resistant is defined as “Protection is provided against a complete penetration, passage of fragments of projectiles or spalling (fragmentation) of the protective material to the degree that injury would be caused to a person standing directly behind the bullet-resisting barrier.”

Prefabricated Steel Wall Panels

Within the detention and correctional facility market, jail and prison cells typically are prefabricated units that are attached into place on the construction site. The manufacturer often builds these prefabricated units to custom specs.

One of the downfalls to the antiquated method of using precast concrete prefabricated cells is that the units had enormous weight when compared to steel wall panels, and took up far more space. In addition to this, concrete structures slowed the building process, because the prefabricated units had to be installed before the building’s superstructure and roof could be completed, which had a tendancy to increase the time a project took, especially with regard to lost work days from inclement weather.

The great advantage of the more modern detention hollow metal panel systems that are used today is that the building’s superstructure can be completed first, and workers can erect the lighter weight steel wall panels without the need for scaffolding or forms.

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